Conor Gallagher beats Rodri, Rice and Alexis in ultimate creative stat that shows he’s not just a presser

Conor Gallagher has been used in a deeper role in recent games, but it hasn’t hurt his production.

If anything, the way he teams up with Moises Caicedo in the middle just encourages him to go even harder. Tonight he broke up attacks and pressed forward in his usual style too. He played dangerous passes, and crossed the ball for the opening goal.

Another good performance brought him to 48 key passes for the season amongst central midfielders, according to WhoScored. Just for comparison’s sake, that’s more than Alexis Mac Allister (48), Declan Rice (41) Rodri (41), Bernardo Silva (34) and Eberechi Eze 32.

Now Gallagher has played more games than some of those players – but so what? Availability is the best ability, as they say. And as all Chelsea fans should have learned over the last couple of years, being fit to play week after week, year after year is a huge positive in itself. And some of them are as ever-present as Gallagher.

Mauricio Pochettino with Conor Gallagher.

More than a runner

We could go in to the other parts of his game – he was truly N’Golo Kante like tonight – but this quality on the ball shouldn’t be underestimated. He’s not in a team that has functioned nearly as well over the course of this season as Liverpool, Man City or Arsenal.

We love how the move of Marc Cucurella inside in possession has helped him back up Gallagher and Caicedo’s front-foot defending, and given them another option in possession. Gallagher has already been among the players of the season, but we’re still seeing new levels reached.

Yes Gallagher runs – better than anybody, basically. But that high energy often gets him into positions where he can create chances, You don’t have to be Bernardo or Eze to be a top creator in this league, and this just proves that.

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