Former Arsenal star Paul Merson insists Chelsea are streets ahead of Tottenham this season and feels the club’s youth policy has saved them a fortune in recent times.
The clubs are set to meet at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Sunday. The Blues remain unbeaten while Spurs were humbled 3-0 by Crystal Palace last time out to lose their perfect record. Thomas Tuchel’s side are one of four who began the weekend on 10 points.
They have looked in superb form and opened their Champions League account with a 1-0 victory over Zenit St Petersburg. It is now back to domestic matters and a London derby in the north of the capital.
Nuno Espirito Santo guided his side to a shock 1-0 triumph over champions Manchester City in their opening league fixture. But they followed the Eagles reverse by managing just a 2-2 Europa Conference League draw with Ligue 1 outfit Rennes on Thursday evening.
The clubs are separated by a solitary point in the league at present. However, Merson believes the playing strength of the sides does not bear comparison, with the Blues vastly superior.
“Chelsea will have a bench full of players Tottenham would kill for this weekend,” he wrote in The Daily Star. “You look at the subs Chelsea had against Aston Villa the other week – Cesar Azpilicueta, Jorginho, Timo Werner, Mason Mount, Ben Chilwell.
“They would all get in the Spurs team. N’Golo Kante and Christian Pulisic weren’t even in the Chelsea squad. If you were Tottenham you would take every single one of those players.
“They are a million miles away from competing with Chelsea for trophies this season.”
Chelsea youth helps finance huge deals
Chelsea managed to bring Romelu Lukaku back to Stamford Bridge during the summer transfer window. The European champions paid a reported club record fee of £97.5 million for the Belgium international.
It was a vast sum to fork out on one player but he has already hit four goals in as many games. And Merson feels the fact that they are able to promote players such as Mason Mount from within helps facilitate the big-money acquisitions.
“Chelsea have had a good crop come through. Mason Mount, Reece James, Callum Hudson-Odoi,” he added. “When you have players like that coming through it helps. Mason Mount has saved Chelsea £70m. That’s how they can go out and spend their money on a Romelu Lukaku.”