Claudio Ranieri believes that Chelsea’s struggles this season stem from the Blues relying on Alvaro Morata up front rather than Diego Costa.
Antonio Conte deemed Costa to be surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge in the summer transfer window and opted to let the Brazilian leave the club and return to Atletico Madrid.
Conte allowed Costa to leave despite the Spanish striker having played a key role in helping Chelsea to win the Premier League title under the Italian coach last season.
Chelsea brought in Morata from Real Madrid in a big money deal back in July and the Spanish forward has made a strong start to life at Stamford Bridge.
However, Morata has not scored in his last six games for Chelsea and he will be desperate to put that right against Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
And former Chelsea boss Ranieri has opened up about Morata’s struggles at Chelsea in recent weeks.
Speaking to Corriere dello Sport, Ranieri said: “What has Chelsea’s problem been so far? It’s down to the injuries and the changes in the squad. It’s not easy to go from Diego Costa to Morata.
“The first is a leader, he carries the team on his shoulders and plays with anger, with force and sheer will. The other is more of a dribbler.
“When you change your centre-forward, you have to also change your approach.”
Chelsea will look to get back to winning ways after their 3-0 loss to Roma on Tuesday night when they take on Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on Sunday afternoon.
The Blues thrashed the Red Devils 4-0 at Stamford Bridge last season.