Chelsea’s centreback dilemma: Who should leave?

Chelsea are facing an important summer. After last year’s transfer ban and the winter transfer phase without a new arrival, Chelsea have been forced to step up their efforts in the summer to keep up with the clubs’ rivals. One of Chelsea’s problem areas it its central defense, as we saw this season. Chelsea are conceding way too many goals and this problem has appeased for a number of seasons now. The days when Chelsea were known for its strong defensive capabilities are over and this must change as soon as possible if Chelsea want to compete for titles. A change in the defence is therefore a must. In this article I want to show who I believe has a future at Chelsea and who should leave the club.

Andreas Christensen:

Christensen was under criticism at the beginning of the season but after the new year he was convincing and fought his way into the starting eleven. With his qualities he impressed in recent matches and is in my opinion currently the best centre back at the club. At only 24 years of age he still has room for improvement and is already a great player, he should definitely stay at Chelsea.

I recently wrote an article about where I go even deeper into his qualities and where I justify my high rating for him: HERE

Verdict: STAY

Fikayo Tomori:       

Tomori is one of the surprises of the season. Before the campaign began, he was expected to be loaned out to a Premier League club, but David Luiz’s departure ensured he remained at Chelsea. The fact that Lampard had allowed David Luiz to leave without a replacement is a testament to his confidence in Tomori, whom he coached at Derby County, where he became player of the year last season.

Tomori had to wait three games for his first appearance in the league. Against Sheffield United he got his chance and he impressed immediately, establishing himself in the team. This was followed by many games in the league until December when he suddenly lost his place in the side with Rudiger reaching match fitness. For me, it was surprising that he didn’t play much anymore. He had strong performances including the game against Liverpool in the league but he sometimes shows insecurities and he still has a lot to learn. For example, he sometimes loses the ball very easily in his own half and his positional play still needs to be improved. On the other hand, it must be said that he is still young (22-years-old) and his potential is visible.

He’s definitely a man for the future and he should stay at Chelsea.He was even the best centre back for a while this season and that shows very well what Lampard will think of him. Unfortunately he couldn’t convince recently, being out of the side, but I’m sure that he will develop into a great player.

Verdict: STAY

Image Source: Getty Images

Kurt Zouma:

After a strong season at Everton, Zouma returned to Chelsea in the summer. According to media reports, Everton were so pleased with him that a possible transfer was in the offing. But this idea became unlikely as Chelsea got a transfer ban, David Luiz left the club and Ethan Ampadu left on loan (Red Bull Leipzig). He played many games this season but he recently lost his place in the team to Christensen and Rüdiger.

I have mixed feelings about Zouma. In my opinion he is a good player but sometimes shaky. With his style of play, he doesn’t really fit in with Lampard’s football philosophy. When he gets under pressure, he usually just shoots the ball forward and can’t build up the game properly, that’s a big minus point. But I also see strengths in him. He is fast and physically dominant to many players, exactly what our defense lacks. He is also an experienced player in our team and has shown that he is a good footballer. At just 25-years-old he still has the best years of his career ahead of him and I would like to give him the chance to get back in his best form, like before the serious injury in the 15/16 season.

A new centre back wouldn’t hurt Chelsea, it would even help the rest of the players to get back into their best form and challenge them more. That’s why I would like to keep Zouma for the next season. I certainly see him as a better and more stable player than Rüdiger and I hope he will return to his old strength.

Verdict: STAY

Image Source: Getty Images

Antonio Rüdiger:

Finally we come to Rüdiger. Since his move from AS Roma in 2017 he has played many games and integrated well into the team. This season he missed most games due to his injury but he was in the starting eleven immediately after he was fit again. Lately he has been under criticism as Chelsea have conceded too many goals due to mistakes made by the German.

To be honest I’m not a big fan of Rüdiger and I realized pretty soon that he can’t solve our problems in the defense. He is a fast player and a leader but he doesn’t convince me on the pitch. With him in the defense I have the feeling that our team isn’t stable, that’s why I prefer for example Zouma in front of him. It has to be said that he still had good games but unfortunately not many. He has been shaky in many games and that brings insecurity to our defense. Just to give you an example, the last-minute goal against Newcastle was his fault as he didn’t cover his player. Although he is tall, aerial duels are not his strength as well as tackling. To be fair, one of his great strengths is his passing. But overall I see him as the worst centre back at the club and I would definitely sell him as I see Christensen, Tomori and Zouma as the better player than him.

Sky Sports reported that he is in negotiations with Chelsea to extend his contract that would possibly make a sale harder. It was also said that Bayern München and Dortmund are interested in him. If an offer comes in for him I would let him go and get a replacement with this money. I just don’t think that he is good enough for Chelsea.

Verdict: SELL

Image Source: Getty Images

If I could choose who should leave of our four centre backs to make way for a new player it would be Rüdiger. He couldn’t convince me during his time at Chelsea and he showed his weaknesses more often than the others. Whether he really goes seems currently unlikely and I guess and fear Zouma will leave Chelsea.

What would you do with our centre-backs? Is keeping all four an option? Let us know on our social media platforms!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s