Chelsea responded to last weekend’s hammering at the hands of Manchester City by dipping into the transfer market with two eye-catching signings.
Ghanaian left-back Abdul-Rahman, effectively a replacement for Filipe Luis, cost £17million and will be expecting to do more than just warm the bench after such a substantial fee.
While the Blues’ title rivals were strengthening considerably, their was a real feeling at Stamford Bridge that, up until the Spanish forward signed for £21.4m, their recruits were contingency plans for when injuries occurred.
Pedro is a proven match winner and one of the best professionals in the game. While La Liga imports haven’t always adapted instantly to the demands of the Premier League, you can expect him to apply himself and put his body on the line for the cause.
Chezsports took time to analyze a possible set up for this weekend’s game against West Brom.
Goalkeeper and Defence:
After a shambolic start to the new season, Chelsea’s defence has come under scrutiny after shipping five goals in two games.
The opening weekend will see Asmir Begovic retain his place in goal, and he may have pushed the Belgian for a regular spot after a string of impressive saves against City.
The Blues’ back line needs rejuvenating, so Mourinho could look to hand Abdul-Rahman his debut at left-back and switch Cesar Azpilicueta to the opposite flank, his original intended position.
The performances of Branislav Ivanovic usually so reliable have been below par after getting the run around by Jefferson Montero and Raheem Sterling respectively, so a spell out of the side may benefit the Serbian.
John Terry was hooked at half-time during the City defeat after a personal pasting from Sergio Aguero, but he should retain his place in the starting eleven at the Hawthorns alongside Gary Cahill.
Pedro’s arrival could see a reshuffle in midfield, although former Barcelona team-mate Cesc Fabregas’s position is causing Mourinho a headache at the moment. Fabregas is one of the Blues’ most crucial creative assets, but he has been criticised for neglecting his defensive duties from a central midfield role. However, because West Brom are not a top eight side, expect him to pair up with Nemanja Matic in a midfield two.
Chelsea’s attacking three behind a sole striker has been the cornerstone to their success in recent years, and Pedro on the right of that triumvirate should enhance the Blues’ fluidity. With Eden Hazard a shoe-in on the left, that leaves Willian and Oscar fighting it out for the number 10 spot behind Diego Costa. While neither have hit the ground running so far this season, the former is most likely to get the nod due to his work-rate.
The most undisputable position in the Chelsea side. It’s simple, if Costa is fit, he starts, and if he is truly fit, the scoreline will tilt to Mourinho’s favour.