Welcome to another edition of Chelsea players being graded for their 2018/2019 campaign! Following last week where we decided who failed and who shined in our defensive areas, we are now going up to the pitch and focus entirely on the midfield. I’ll give grades between A+ and F- based on my honest assessment on their season. Antonio Rudiger was the only player to achieve at least an A in the defence, so will I be kinder on our midfield? Let’s see!
Mauricio Sarri’s lovechild from Napoli, who is always the first name on the team sheet. He divides opinion around the Stamford Bridge crowd, as some acknowledges his contribution, his passing stats, controlling the tempo of the game, whereas other fans like to pick up the fact that he has barely scored or created a goal. His job for Sarri was to keep it simple, and keep the game ticking along. For £50million, you’d expect more of an all-round player who contributes to more goals, but I believe he is very gifted and can’t question his mentality. He has come from the Italian league, needing time to adapt and I believe he grew stronger as the season wore on. We hope he can step up another gear, but pleased with his performances thus far.
Now, not one Chelsea fan will have a bad word to say about this guy. He is tremendous with his passing and dribbling ability, covers every blade of grass, and is a humble individual that puts his team first. Without him in the team, we look a shadow of our best, and Kante is instrumental in our success. Rumours are that PSG want to sign him, but he is just as important to us as Hazard, so we cannot afford to lose both – we really can’t! Kante always performs at least an 8/10 in every game, and his consistency is fantastic.
Ross Barkley gets a lot of stick from our home fans, which I believe is unjust. He hasn’t hit the heights that many had hoped, but he has been influential all season, particularly in our Europa League Cup run. He is capable of shifting past players, creating space for others, uses his pace intelligently, and can contribute to some fine attacking link up play. Admittedly, he can be caught in possession, and sometimes I wonder if he lacks that high level of football intelligence, but nonetheless, he can be satisfied with his team performance, and perhaps our fans should support him more. He’s still young.
Often overlooked for a starting position, and also has had to deal with ongoing injury issues all season. However, unlike Barkley, the majority of the Chelsea fans seem to have a soft spot for Ruben. I can’t see him progressing into a world beater, but he can do an adequate job for as a squad player. He is still young, so the potential is still there for him to prove me wrong. I am more than delighted with his contribution this season, as 10 goals is no mean feat, and expect him to flourish even more next year. Let’s hope he gets given a bigger chance.
I’m a huge fan of Mateo Kovačić. Once again, another player that divides opinion, and we have seen him deliver poor performances, particularly in the middle part of the season. However, I can count at least five times he has been instrumental in our success in the game, raising the tempo, working incredibly for his team, and his has the ability to cause issues for the opposition defence too. His performance in the final against Arsenal was remarkable, and that performance alone had won over some of the doubters. We have to keep onto him.
Do you agree or disagree with the ratings? Coming soon, I’ll rate the players in the attacking positions with the concluding list of players. Thanks for reading!