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Jorginho's role in Chelsea

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Feature
3.88K   //    24 Aug 2018, 22:53 IST

After a lot of hubbub in the Chelsea Bush Telegraph, Conte was finally sacked this summer and replaced by Maurizio Sarri. Sarri, the progressive and enterprising manager who created one of the most exciting teams in Europe last season: Napoli.

The first thing Sarri did after joining Chelsea was to sign Jorginho, his star play-maker in Napoli for a reported £57m. What is also interesting is Jorginho choosing to join Chelsea, over Pep Guardiola's powerhouse Manchester City. This portrays that Jorginho relishes playing under Sarri and is a central figure in the style of football Sarri brings to Chelsea.

Jorgi
Jorginho has been signed by Chelsea for a five year contract

Sarriball formation

Chelsea's
Chelsea's setup and likely starting XI this season

'Sarriball' is what fans fondly refer to Sarri's possession-based attacking style. The Italian prefers to play with a 4-3-3 formation with high pressing, the objective being to win the ball as quickly as possible and while with the ball, to retain it for as long as possible.

Sarri prefers fast and dynamic attacks and he expects a fluid transition from defence to offence. This is effective in positionally breaking through the opponent's defensive formation as well as being quick on counter attacks.

While defending, Sarri uses a high defensive line and likes to have his players compact within a range of 15 m. He positionally places his players to cut down the threatening passing lanes and to have a strong central presence. He drills his players to maintain the compact defensive structure which also enables a swift transition to offence after winning the ball.

How Jorginho fits in perfectly in Sarri's setup

Sarri replaced Kante with Jorginho in the CDM position for Chelsea, this is why Kante is playing a much more offensive role this season. Jorginho is a 'Regista' which is a deep-lying playmaker, a role starred by legends like Gerson, Pirlo, Modric etc.

Jorginho who is going to be Chelsea's 'Regista' this season would be the launchpad and base of the attacks. Jorginho is an excellent player with the ball and he excels at making penetrative passes, through balls, accurate lofted passes, one-touch passes, passes onto tight lanes etc.

He tries to control and dictate the tempo of play with the other midfielders and wingers trying to overload flanks. He is positionally astute and has an excellent vision with an accurate understanding of where his teammates are positioned. He makes threatening passes to the advanced playmakers who are well placed to set up and score goals.

He was excellent at this role in Napoli and has already started off brilliantly in Chelsea after recording the most number of passes in the last match against Arsenal.

However Jorginho has certain weaknesses, the most significant one being he is not so brilliant off the ball and defensively. This may leave the Chelsea defensive vulnerable, especially on quick counter-attacks. This is why Sarri has placed Kante and potentially Kovacic to compliment Jorginho in the midfield.

Both Kante and Kovacic are energetic and ball-winning midfielders who will have to perform vital offensive and defensive duties in Sarri's setup. They are expected to make up for the defensive vulnerability of Jorginho and excel at vital interceptions and quickly winning the ball back.

Thus, Chelsea's Kovacic/Barkley-Jorginho-Kante midfield partnership can be a potent threat this season. The three midfielders compliment each other brilliantly with Kovacic or Barkley being box to box midfielders, Jorginho the deep-lying playmaker and Kante the ball-winner and energetic midfielder. It would be a thrill to watch how they operate together for Chelsea.


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