Chelsea’s rumoured “single pivot” plan doesn’t fit their players and could be a disaster

The Athletic’s piece looking at the signing of Kiernan Dewsbury-Hall has an interesting note which claims that Chelsea “are expected to adopt a 4-3-3 formation with a single pivot, allowing two advanced No 8s to play between the lines and attack the final third.”

That would make sense, with new coach Enzo Maresca importing the system he used at Leicester last season,  where Dewsbury-Hall was one of the number 8s.

A tactical view of Chelsea’s formation.

A big question to answer

But who will this “single pivot” be then?

Moises Caicedo? Enzo Fernandez? Romeo Lavia? KDH? None of them really have the right profile. All of them have more value pushing further on, either because they like to press on the front foot, or because they have the technical skill to be effective in the final third.

Caicedo is the most natural to drop in there simply because he’s got the legs to cover the spaces, but even he isn’t an ideal choice, and we saw him really struggle when tasked with such a role last season. Of course it’s always possible to adjust the rest of the team to help him out in performing there, but it’s by no means a natural fit.

Lesley Ugochukwu, despite having played further forward earlier in his career, also could potentially play there, but there’s no way that a young player who missed the majority of last season injured is being lined up a first choice midfielder when there are so many expensive alternatives to squeeze in.

What we’re really looking for here is a Rodri-like player, and there are currently none on the books. To compound the issue, we’d probably need two of them to make sure we have cover for injuries and to comply with the “two world class players in every position” philosophy that’s supposedly our new mantra.

So this either feels like inaccurate reporting of our plan, or just a bad idea as things stand.

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