Aquilani cost far more than 5 million pounds. Rafa isn't the greatest manager transfer wise, but he's not too bad. Just happens that the mistake of pissing off Xabi and "replacing" him with Aqua was catastrophic. Under Rafa we finished 5th (but won the CL), 3rd, 3rd, 4th, 2nd. Sold Alonso, finished 7th and we haven't recovered. Obviously not helped by Kenny blowing a lot of the money we had from FSG on utter shite. Carroll, Downing, Adam, and to a lesser extent Hendo (b/c i still have some hope for him
) was a huge waste of money. Look at Newcastle, we funded their rise last year. Cabaye, Ba, Cisse all bought or paid for (Ba was a free) from the money we handed over for that numpty Carroll.
Not good enough? Cmon, your squad this year is far better than your squad last year that won you the damn thing.
Don't get me wrong, I don't think Chelsea did the wrong thing by firing AVB. I just think he cops a lot of undeserved criticism from the whole thing. Yes his tactics were just plain wrong on occasion (and still remains wrong at Spurs), and yes, trying to dump out all the older players at once was dumb but he really didn't do too poorly. Its not like he started to drive you into the ground like Hodgson, King Kenny and to a lesser extent Rafa did.
Bigger loss for Chelsea isn't RDM though, i heard Eva was leaving as well. Huge loss to the club but on the plus side, less stoppages for groin injuries