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Ray Wilkins insists Chelsea are significantly weaker than last season

Chelsea favourite Ray Wilkins insists that the Blues have significantly weakened their squad following their transfer business in the summer.

The Premier League holders lost 1-0 to Manchester City in their recent outing, and this leaves them six points behind Pep Guardiola's side, heading into the international break.

Speaking on Sky Sports, Wilkins believes the Blues failed to adequately strengthen their options having let the likes of John Terry, Nemanja Matic and Diego Costa leave the club. Terry ended his 21-year association with the Blues to join Aston Villa while Matic and Costa followed suit with permanent moves to Manchester United and Atletico Madrid respectively.

Wilkins said: "I don’t think we are anywhere near as good as last year. We had the best forward (Costa) in the league last year. We had people at the club that you need at a football club, like John Terry. I don’t know why we didn’t offer John something around the club to keep that Chelsea business going on, I really don’t. Bakayoko is no Matic, not yet anyway. Matic is just superb. I don’t think we are anywhere near what we were last year."

Chelsea experienced a similar start to the season under Antonio Conte last term, and they managed to turn things around with a 13-match winning streak in the top-flight. However, this season could pave differently with the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United having curbed their flaws with quality summer signings.

Conte is already understood to be frustrated with the limited transfer spending in the forward department, and the Blues are reported to be planning a mid-season spending spree in order to keep the Italian happy. Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez has emerged as a potential bargain option for the New Year, but the Gunners are likely to give priority to foreign clubs for their contract rebel.

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