Swansea vs Chelsea – Key Player Battles
It’s been a week since we had the taste of some Premier League action. If December was filled with some crazy scheduling, January has been more or less kind to the players in terms of games played.
Unlike the players, usually fewer schedules results in frustration and irritation for football crazy fans like us, but thanks to the January Transfer Window; our usual dose of some senseless football transfers rumors has filled in perfectly for the lack of footballing action.
Messi for Chelsea anyone?
Or maybe, Hazard to PSG?
Seriously! How do these handsomely paid writers come up with these stupid stories is beyond me!
It’s a known fact that almost 90% of them are crappy made up news which no one pays attention to but amidst these dreamy rumors, sometimes, in a blue moon, there’s some actual transfer that does finalises and the one which concern us the most as a Chelsea fan is Wilfried Bony’s switch to Manchester City from Swansea.
Now, Bony would still have been unavailable for our trip to Liberty Stadium due the his involvement in AFCON but his switch to City shows us how serious our rivals are on retaining their PL title and with a strike force like theirs, they sure are one of the favorites!
As for Swansea, they find themselves a little short on the striking department but it would still be a difficult job for Mourinho and co. to snatch all 3 points when we line-up against them which brings us to the key player battles. There are some important battles that would go around the pitch on Saturday and among them, these three are the one to definitely look out for:
NATHAN DYER vs FILIPE LUIS
In the absence of Wilfried Bony, the impressive English winger will be the most potent force going forward for the home side. With 5 goals and 3 assists across all competitions, so far this season, Nathan Dyer has been in a scintillating form for Garry Monk’s side. The Winger’s ability to cut inside from the right wing at a lightning pace along with his knack of scoring important goals by being in the right position at the right time is one of the main strength of the Englishman, something for Luis to worry about.
In a game like this, Mourinho would have usually opted for Cesar Azpilicueta on the Left Back spot, but due to the injury suffered by the Spaniard in the last game, it will be Luis with the task of containing Dyer. The Brazilian fullback is no doubt brilliant going forward, providing necessary width to the side as he has done all season, but his real test will lie in shunting down Nathan Dyer from cutting inside when he comes up against him tomorrow at the Liberty Stadium. Definitely the most important battle to look forward to!
EDEN HAZARD vs ANGEL RANGEL
Although not the most prolific in stats department, Eden Hazard has still been the cover boy for the Chelsea side this season. The Belgian has overall been a success for the Mourinho side taking his game to the level we have expected of him since he joined us in 2012. Also known in the GHJB community as the destroyer of opposition fullbacks, the Belgian with his amazing pace and twinkle feet has been a nightmare for the defenders. The Winger, in his usual quest of greatness, will come up against Angel Rangel at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday.
The Spanish full-back has been a regular starter for the Garry Monk’s side so far this season, but the Right Back has never come up against a player of Eden Hazard’s caliber. Angel’s ability to close down wingers and stop them from cutting inside has been one of his main strength which will be severely tested against mighty Hazard. A fun battle to watch out for, come tomorrow!
JOHN TERRY vs BAFETIMBI GOMIS
Wilfried Bony had been the regular, first choice starter for the Garry Monk’s side so far but after his transfer to Manchester City, it will be the responsibility of Bafetimbi Gomis to lead the line for the home side when they line-up against us tomorrow.
The French Striker, who is reportedly being chased by clubs like Dortmund, Schalke and Arsenal has been very impressive in his few starts this season. Playing as a second choice behind Bony, the Frenchman has racked up 4 goals and couple of assists which further proves the ability of Gomis and it would be wise for Terry and co. to not treat him as a slouch either after what happened with Harry Kane!
As for John Terry, the Englishman had a terrible game against Spurs but the veteran came back strongly against Newcastle last week. Another week of rest means the Captain would be fresh and ready to take on the home side making his battle with Gomis, the one to look out for on Saturday. Watch out for it!
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Edited By: Ankur Bhatt