Premier League: Joao Flix, the ‘savior’ that Chelsea awaits: a necessary piece


joao flix be a new player Chelsea. in the next few hours. The luso leave the Atltico Madrid temporarily (loaned without purchase option) in an operation that will leave 11 ‘kilos’ in the Metropolitan. The midfielder, who had not worked out for a good first part of the season and whose relationship with Simeone had ‘collapsed’, thus finds the opportunity to show himself in a first-rate place like Stamford Bridge. Now it is up to him to take advantage of the opportunity that is presented to him.

Nevertheless, shining in London will not be easy. Chelsea is not going through an optimal moment, to put it mildly: He is 10th in the Premier, 10 points behind in the Champions League and was eliminated from both English Cups at the first exchange… for the first time since 1989. He has the Champions League (round of 16 vs. Dortmund) left as a lifeline for 2022/23… and for Graham Potter’s project, which is staggering months after arriving.

The role that Potter needs

First you have to ask yourself What does Potter’s Chelsea want to play? His Brighton was one of the most attractive teams to watch in the Premier (flexible, prioritizing possession but very offensive)… but everything got complicated in London. Although he could hide behind the absence of preseason (he arrived halfway through the course to replace Tuchel), after the World Cup, Chelsea has not improved its game or fixed its problems.

Graham Potter, in a match with Chelsea.

According to OPTA data, Chelsea is the 7th team in the 2021/22 Premier League that shoots the least: a total of 146… while Manchester City, the one that shoots the most, reaches 227. In fact, Chelsea can’t ‘complain’ about little success in front of the goal because the xG are similar to the number of goals they add: just 19 goals in 17 games.

Joao Flix must be that footballer who changes the ‘Blues’ attacks and finds the famous last pass. To date, Chelsea is the second team in the Premier with the longest possessions in their attacks: 4.11 passes per sequence. Behind City, again, but very far in terms of the number of those plays that end in a shot against the rival goal.

Midfielder, winger or false nine?

“First of all: What is the ideal position for Joao Flix? He is supposed to be a midfielder but in Portugal we see him more close to the wing or on other occasions more like a second striker”reflect Fran Guillin, journalist of ‘DAZN’. And seeing the needs of Chelsea, it is well raised. To date, Joao Flix has played mainly as a midfielder (126 games) but has also held positions as a striker (33 games) or wing (40 games between the two sides).

Joao F.

Joao Flix, in a match with Atlético de Madrid.

For his part, In London Graham Potter has been alternating schemes: defense of three center backs, 4-2-3-1, 4-3-3… the Solihull coach doesn’t hit the key (despite the fact that changing drawing is common for him, he showed it in Brighton wisely) and the 4-0 conceded a few days ago against City in the FA Cup doesn’t help.

If Potter plays 4-3-3, the weak link [que podra aprovechar Joao, ed.] is Pulisic

Fran Guilln, DAZN journalist

“If Potter plays 4-3-3, the weak link is Pulisic,” Fran Guilln told MARCA, who warns how chameleon-like Potter is, capable of changing schemes up to three times during the same match. “With three centre-backs he could play without problem in the midfielder line: in Brighton he played with two behind the striker in 3-4-2-1”.

Joao F.

Joao Flix, in a match with Atlético de Madrid.Alberto Nevado

Even if we go there, is the false nine position: Chelsea has not found in aubameyang to the striker who has been looking for a long time and Havertz Nor has it finished consolidating, although it is the one that starts with the most ballots as a starter. fofanaFor his part, a newcomer, he is too young to demand that he ‘save’ Chelsea. witchthe other alternative, broke the cruciate a few weeks ago.

Joao’s ‘rivals’

None of the ‘opponents’ that Joao Flix will have to gain a foothold in the eleven are going through their best moment. Those who were in the best shape (by moment of form), in fact, have been injured: Sterling and Pulisic were knocked out against City and have, respectively, a hamstring injury and a (yet unspecified) knee problem.

Aubameyang, still too intermittent, has back problems and witchAs we explained, he is seriously injured. Among the healthy, therefore, we are left Dietro Fofana (newcomer), Hakim Ziyech (who barely counted at Chelsea until his ‘rebirth’ in Qatar 2022) and Havertz, who barely has 7 goals this season. Surely Mountwho is not at his best level either, is the most established piece in Chelsea’s game creation.

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