There has been a number of impressive Chelsea players starting the new season in top form, including Blues midfielder Mateo Kovacic, writes the Chelsea Chronicle.
The £150,000-a-week midfielder looks at the peak of his powers right now and appears to be making a big difference whenever he’s on the pitch.
His defensive positioning and game management looks bang on right now. In addition, he’s extremely positive with his passing and he’s showing the kind of flair dribbling that he’s got in his locker.
You could definitely make a case for saying his form in the early weeks of this new season is reminiscent to what he was like throughout the 2019/20 campaign when ex-manager Frank Lampard was in charge.
First of all, it’s worth noting that Kovacic had a decent 2020/21 season. The Croatia international had a solid year where he dealt with the transition of the managerial change fairly well.
However, he’s found himself as the back-up option to N’Golo Kante and Jorginho as the preferred midfield starting duo under current boss Thomas Tuchel.
Kovacic was Chelsea’s Player of the Season in the 2019/20 year, though, and has the individual talent to be in the best XI.
He’s got a unique skillset where he offers the team a great option to beat a press, plus the way he’ll drive forward up the pitch on the ball is unlike what they have in the centre of the park.
There can be a strong case made for Kovacic being in Tuchel’s line-up right now on this form as he looks seriously re-energised right now.
The arrival of central midfielder Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid on deadline day now gives the Blues a fourth quality option in the middle, so the pressure has been cranked up even further to perform.
At his beat Kovacic brings a calmness, quality and precision on the ball that is valuable to the Chelsea team.
The 2019/20 version of himself is one that pushes Jorginho and Kante mightily close for the starting roles. This is the why his form is so key to manager Tuchel.
If the Blues play big games back-to-back, he can have no worry rotating his midfield options. The worst thing they can do is overplay Jorginho and Kante, but that doesn’t need to be the case.