Thursday, March 23, 2023

Chelsea To Ruffle Tottenham’s Feathers With A Move For Defender: Worth The Gamble?

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Snehanjan Banerjee
Snehanjan used to a former columnist at The 4th Official. Fan of KK, Cricket and Liverpool (in no particular order).

Antonio Conte started life in England in a pleasant manner but after two back to back Premier League losses against Liverpool and Arsenal, things are looking sombre already for the Blues. The West London side did not have a good summer transfer window until the deadline day when they made two defensive signings in the form of David Luiz and Marcos Alonso. With results not going their way, we expect the Premier League giants to be one of the most active Premier League sides during the winter transfer window.

Chelsea have been pretty vulnerable defensively this season and the situation became bad to worse after the injury to skipper John Terry. Defensive reinforcements will be the biggest priority for Conte in January and ESPN claim that Spurs defender Ben Davies is topping the wanted list of the Italian mastermind.

It has been two seasons since Ben Davies made his move to Spurs from Swansea but he could never establish himself as the first-choice left back at White Hart Lane under Mauricio Pochettino. Most of the fans will be raising their eyebrows, though, if their club is looking for their cross-town rivals’ squad player. However, it does not seem as bad as it sounds.

The key reason why Ben Davies plays second-fiddle to Danny Rose at Spurs is that the Welshman is more of a defensive minded full-back when compared to his English colleague who is a menace with his bombarding runs from the left flank. Pochettino wants his full-backs to burst forward and that is why Rose is favoured by the Argentine.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - SEPTEMBER 26: Ben Davies of Tottenham Hotspur during a training session at the CSKA arena on September 26, 2016 on the eve of the UEFA Champions League group E football match between CSKA Moscow and Tottenham in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Oleg Nikishin/Getty Images)

Ben Davies will prove to be a solid addition to Chelsea mainly due to his versatility across the back line. With Chelsea struggling defensively, Conte is likely to switch to his favoured 3-5-2 system sooner rather than later and Davies can be his trump card in that tactical switch. The Welshman had an incredible Euro 2016 campaign where he played on the left of a 3-man defence.

The 23-year-old had a passing accuracy of 79.5% in the Euros while playing in a 3-man defence winning as many as 2 aerials every game. The Welshman made as many as 1 tackle, 3.4 interceptions, 4.4 clearances and 1.2 blocks in every game during the Euros. With Danny Rose out injured, he did a great job filling in the left-back position for Spurs this season in the Premier League. His versatility across the backline makes him an attractive target for Conte.

Still only 23 years of age, Davies has a big future ahead of him and can prove to be a big hit at Stamford Bridge. On top of that, he is a home-grown player which adds more value to his resume. Spurs will be reluctant to sell the player to their local and direct rivals but with Danny Rose awarded a new contract recently, the ball is not in their court now.

Ben Davies looks like a potentially big success under Antonio Conte. He offers the former Juventus boss plenty of options which he does not have right now.

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