Chelsea’s Tactical Errors: Misusing Chilwell and the Need for Change.
In the early stages of the 2023/2024 Premier League season, Chelsea’s tactical choices under the helm of Mauricio Pochettino are drawing significant scrutiny, particularly the puzzling misusage of one of their key assets, Ben Chilwell.
Let’s delve into a comprehensive analysis of the mistakes and flaws in Chelsea’s current tactical approach and why a shift to a more attacking and flexible 4-3-3 formation is not just a suggestion but a necessity.
According to @MozoFootball: Ben Chilwell is yet to register 10 successful progressive passes (7) and progressive counter attacks ending in a outcome (7) inside the first four Premier League games for Chelsea. For comparison Malo Gusto has already double more in each statistic in fewer starts.
And here are the reasons:
Chilwell’s Struggling as a Left Winger:
One of the most glaring issues in Chelsea’s tactics is the deployment of Ben Chilwell as a left winger in Pochettino’s 3-4-2-1 setup. While versatility can be an asset, this experiment seems to be failing miserably. Chilwell, renowned for his prowess as a left-back, is being asked to fill a role that doesn’t align with his strengths.
Chilwell is fundamentally a defender who excels in both defensive solidity and offensive contributions. He has a keen eye for progressive passes and the ability to trigger counterattacks effectively when positioned as a fullback.
However, when pushed forward as a winger, his performance has been far from impressive. Chilwell lacks the natural dribbling skills, pace, and positional awareness required to thrive in this new role. As a result, his outputs in terms of successful progressive passes and counterattacks have dwindled significantly.
Tactical Decision Backfired:
Pochettino’s decision to move Chilwell out of his comfort zone has had ripple effects throughout the team. The most notable consequence is the reshuffling of the defense. Levi Colwill, a natural center-back, has been deployed as a left-back in Chilwell’s absence. While Colwill possesses promise, utilizing him as a left-back is a risky move that has exposed Chelsea’s defense.
The statistics speak for themselves. Chelsea has suffered two defeats in the opening four fixtures, and the tactical gamble doesn’t seem to be paying off. The defensive instability and lack of fluidity in attack are glaring issues that need immediate attention.
4-3-3 Formation Will Bring The Best Of Chilwell:
To rectify these tactical errors, a shift to a 4-3-3 formation is imperative. This formation offers several advantages for Chelsea’s style of play. Firstly, it allows for a more balanced setup with four defenders instead of five, enhancing defensive stability.
Importantly, a 4-3-3 formation would see Ben Chilwell return to his natural left-back position. This shift would enable him to showcase his full potential, combining his defensive prowess with his ability to provide crucial offensive contributions. Chilwell’s overlapping runs and well-timed crosses from the left flank have been missed sorely in the current setup.
Moreover, the 4-3-3 formation is more flexible and conducive to Chelsea’s attacking style. It allows them to control the midfield with a three-man midfield, ensuring better possession retention and the ability to launch incisive attacks.
This setup can also accommodate a more attacking role for the talented Mason Mount, who has the ability to thrive in a central role in the midfield trio.
In conclusion, Chelsea’s current tactical choices, particularly the misuse of Ben Chilwell, are proving costly. It’s high time for Mauricio Pochettino to reevaluate the team’s formation and opt for a more attacking and flexible 4-3-3 setup.
This change will not only benefit Chilwell but also provide Chelsea with the balance and firepower they need to succeed in the demanding Premier League.
Chelsea’s faithful fans are eagerly waiting for a return to the club’s trademark style of play, and a tactical shift could be the key to unlocking their true potential. #CFC #TacticalAnalysis