2017 UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL HOTELS, CARDIFF June 3RD & KIEV 2018 - CLICK HERE to BOOK HOTELS PACKAGES The right-back problem: What are our options?

The right-back problem: What are our options?

Chelsea seem to be keen on signing a new right-back before the season begins. Last season we struggled whenever Branislav Ivanovic (normally the first-choice RB) was either injured or suspended, & the club would be keen to ensure that we have quality cover at the RB position before the start of the 2012-13 season. 

 

As is always the case, Chelsea have been linked to numerous right-backs. Gregory Van Der Wiel, Cesar Azpilicueta, Mathieu Debuchy, Lukasz Piszczek & even Maicon have been rumoured to be on Roman Abramovich’s shopping list. Our interest in Van Der Wiel & Azpilicueta seems to have cooled a bit, but we are still strongly linked to Debuchy, Piszczek & Maicon. Let’s now take a look at what options seem most viable :-

1) Sign Debuchy/Piszczek/Maicon– If we sign one of these players, we are assured quality cover at the right-back position. Of course, none of these players are extremely young. Debuchy & Piszczek are 26 & 27 respectively, while Maicon turns 31 soon. This isn’t the worst thing in the world as it would mean that someone like Todd Kane will get a chance of breaking into the first team soon, especially if we sign Maicon. I have always maintained that Chelsea have plenty of quality youngsters, & it is imperative that we give them a chance to break into our first team. Signing one of these 3 right-backs would mean that we have decent cover at the RB position whilst also giving Todd Kane a fair chance to stake his claim as a regular in the first team. 
2) Sign Azpilicueta– We were linked to Van Der Wiel before the Euros began, but he had a poor showing at the tournament (along with the rest of the Dutch team). Hence, I don’t see him as an option anymore. However, Azpilicueta is another story. He’s young & has the potential to be one of the best. The fact that he is equally adept at attacking & defending definitely helps his case. Marseille are willing to listen to offers around the region of £8M, which is exactly the amount it would cost us to buy Piszczek or Debuchy. However, signing him would mean Todd Kane’s chances of being a regular in the first team would be severely damaged. Signing Azpilicueta is definitely an option, but it’s an option I don’t see the club taking. 

Paulo Ferreira: Will he step up when required?

3) Work with what we have & sign no one– Before you flood this article with comments such as “You’re crazy”, hear me out! Even if Chelsea don’t manage to sign a new RB, we could work with what we have & still ensure that we get results. If we don’t sign a new RB, the obvious suspects to fill in when Ivanovic isn’t playing would be Paulo Ferreira & Sam Hutchinson. Given the fact that it seems highly unlikely that Ivanovic will be regularly rested (despite a packed schedule next season), surely RDM could count on Hutchinson & Ferreira to step up whenever required. Ryan Bertrand made only 14 appearances last season, despite being the obvious choice to fill in for Ashley Cole as left-back. One could argue that we don’t need to spend £8M on a player who will mostly be on the bench. Meanwhile, the club could ensure Todd Kane get’s a few decent loan spells so that he is ready for first team action sooner rather than later.

In my opinion, any of the above options would work just fine. Only time will tell what option the club decides to exercise.

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