Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Chelsea To Rival Lazio Among Several Other Clubs For Full-Back: What Will He Add To Lampard’s Team?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

According to a recent report by La Lazio Siamo Noi, Chelsea are set to rival Lazio among several other clubs in pursuit of Hearts full-back Aaron Hickey this summer. The same source has also mentioned that the Blues are monitoring the Scottish defender’s situation but will have to move quickly if they want to recruit him as they will face some serious competition from Lazio, Celtic, Bayern Munich, AC Milan, Manchester City and Crystal Palace in the race to acquire his services during the summer transfer window.

Hickey’s Rapid Emergence In Scottish Football

The Glasgow-born youngster has enjoyed a solid season at the Tynecastle Park after producing a few eye-catching displays on the left side of Daniel Stendel’s backline. He had featured in 30 matches for the Scottish outfit last season, scoring one goal and providing one assist in all competitions. However, Hickey needs to improve his productivity in the final third if he intends to be a world-class left-back someday.

The 18-year-old (it’s his birthday today) has shown a few glimpses of incredible potential during the recently concluded Scottish Premiership campaign. At such a tender age, he has already established himself as a regular in the Scottish top-flight. However, the jury is still out on whether he can make such a positive impact in the Premier League if the Blues can win the chase for his signature in this off-season.

Hickey has also represented Scotland at various youth levels which have enhanced in his status back in his homeland. However, a summer move to Stamford Bridge could help him take the next step in his playing career as he will be able to get to play with some world-class talents at the English capital.

Chelsea to rival Lazio among several other clubs for Hickey who is seen in the picture
Aaron Hickey of Heart of Midlothian is seen prior to the Betfred League Cup semi-final between Rangers and Heart of Midlothian at Hampden Park on November 03, 2019, in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

What Will The Scottish Whizkid Add To Frank Lampard’s Side?

Hickey has primarily been used in the left-back position, but his versatility allows him to fill in as a right-back or operate as a central defender if needed. He can make full use of his quickness to make some lung-bursting runs with the ball out on the wide areas. The talented Scotsman is also capable of delivering a few inviting crosses into the opposition penalty area, which makes him a constant threat going forward. He is often quick to read the danger and can pull off some vital interceptions and last-gasp clearances for his team.

At 18, Hickey has established himself as a promising left-back so Lampard will do well to lure him to Stamford Bridge this summer. The left-back position has been a problem area for Chelsea as both Marcos Alonso and Emerson Palmieri has struggled to find consistency with their performances this season. Even though the former has been terrific going forward, yet he can be a bit vulnerable defensively inside his own half. The reverse is true for Palmieri as he struggles to be productive in the final third but can be a decent defender at the back.

Hence, recruiting a full-back of Hickey’s potential will undeniably be an intelligent move for the Blues in the long-run. He will not only add some variety and depth to the Chelsea backline but also serve as a decent back-up option for the left-back slot at West London. With all things considered, the Premier League giants should consider orchestrating a move to land Hickey before the start of the new campaign.

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