Lessons From Chelsea’s Match Against Bournemouth.
With the English Premier league kicking off in 16 days time, Premier league teams have been involved in pre season training and games.
Premier league’s side and UEFA Champions league defending champions, Chelsea football club of England had their second pre season game against Championship side, AFC Bournemouth in preparation for the new season.
For Chelsea, the match against Bournemouth which it won, 2-1 via goals from academy players, Broja and Ugbo, has so many lessons to learn from.
Prior to the pre season match against Bournemouth, Chelsea had their first pre season match against Peterborough United, an EFL League one side that just got promoted to the championship by virtue of their 2nd position in the 3rd tier league.
With two more pre season games still coming up against Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur on the 1st and 4th August respectively, Chelsea must have learnt so much in the match against Bournemouth AFC.
1. NEW PLAYERS FROM ACADEMY
Against Bournemouth, Chelsea’s two goals came from the legs of Chelsea’s academy products. Despite the presence of Pulistic, Ziyech and Tammy Abraham on the field of play, the trio could not find the net.
Reprieve however came when Tuchel made some changes that brought in Armando Broja for Pulistic in the 46th minute and Nigerian Ike Ugbo for Tammy Abraham in the 63rd minute.
For Broja, the 19 year old Albanian forward was an academy graduate and played for Chelsea in the Premier league 2.
Last season, Chelsea loaned him out to Netherlands side, Vittese Arnhem where he scored 11 goals for the club in 34 appearances according to Chelsea News.
As a result of the high value Chelsea has for Broja, it signed a new long term contract with the goal poacher that will keep him at Stamford Bridge till 2026.
Photo Credit: Chelsea News
For Ike Dominique Ugbo, his romance with Chelsea dated as far back as 2007 when he enrolled in Chelsea academy. For most part of his career with Chelsea, he has been on loan. In 2017/18 season, he was loaned to Barnsley. And between 2018 and 2019, he was loaned to Million Keys and Scunthorpe. His loan spells took him to Dutch side, Roda JC in 2019/20 where he scored 13 goals in 28 appearances and last season-2020/21, he was loaned to Cercle Brugge where made 32 appearances for the club and banged in 16 goals according to transfer market.com.
Photo Credit: Stamford Bridge Too far
A product of England U-17 and U-20 team, Ike Ugbo(22) who was born in London and of Nigerian descent, had never played a single competitive match for Chelsea but he’s rumoured to have agreed personal terms with top Belgian side, KRC Genk for a transfer this summer according to ASBTF.
Conor John- Gallagher was another Chelsea’s academy player that has also been on loan to West Brom. He was outstanding in the match against Bournemouth in the absence of regulars. At West Brom last season, he appeared in 30 matches, scored 2 goals and had 2 assists as a midfielder according to transfer market.com.
Photo Credit: transfer market
2. GOOD AND QUALITY PLAYERS ON LOAN
From this pre season game, we saw good and quality players who are either on loan or playing in the premier league 2 side for Chelsea.
22 year old Malang Sarr , 22, a France national gave a good account of himself at the right back. Dujon Sterling, 21 year old England national was impressive beside Drinkwater at the defensive midfield. Clarke Salter who came in for Ziyech in the second half was another bright spot in new faces. In addition to these players were Armando Broja, Ike Ugbo and Conor Gallagher.
3. PRE-SEASON GAMES EFFECT.
Playing pre-season games ahead of commencement of a new season has shown the importance of such games in discovering talents from a pool of players who are either on loan, in the academy or playing in the premier league 2 for Chelsea.
It was an opportunity for the coach to have a first hand knowledge of the presence of quality players that abound in the club.
Photo Credit: 1000 logos
4. NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF ABSENCE OF REGULARS
With just 16 days to the commencement of the English Premier league, most of Chelsea’s players have not yet reported for pre-season training and games.
In the match against Bournemouth, only Kepa , Alonso, Drinkwater, Hudson Odoi, Pulistic, Abraham and Ziyech were the noticeable regular players on the ground.
Conspicuously absent from the pre-season games were players like Rudiger, Thiago Silva, Zouma, Ben Chilwell, Reece James, Azpilcueta, Emerson, Jorginho, Ngolo Kante, Kovacic, Kai Harvetz, Timo Werner and others.
The pre-season games are opportunities for the regular players to blend before commencement of hostilities. It is an opportunity for the regular players to put themselves in the right frame of mind either psychologically or mentally..
What’s the point in preparing for a war without your arsenal?
What’s the point in making use of some players for pre-season games, but won’t be available for use when the season starts?
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