Sarriball has been the rave of the moment at Stamford Bridge since the arrival of Maurizio Sarri but there are some apparent loopholes in the system based on the playing personnel at Sarri’s disposal.
The major one is the issue of Stamford Bridge’s beloved N’Golo Kante under the Italian manager.
Before the arrival of Maurizio Sarri, Kante played as the defensive midfielder in front of the defence line under former manager Antonio Conte.
Conte’s system didn’t require N’Golo Kante to have an exceptional ability to distribute the ball and dictate play.
He didn’t need to have the eye for a killer pass, and also didn’t require my major dribbling skills in the position. Finally, he didn’t require the ability to score goals regularly.
He was tasked to be combative and break up play, and his ability to do this effectively, alongside his ability to cover more ground with tireless running enabled him to carve a niche for himself as one of the best defensive midfielders in the game.
Well, fast-forward to now under Maurizio Sarri and his Sarriball demands, and it’s a different setup altogether.
Jorginho has taken over the defensive midfield position because of his exceptional abilities on the ball, passing accuracy, as well as the ability to dictate play to suit Sarri’s system.
It’s no more news that Sarri’s playing style cannot accommodate N’Golo Kante in his traditional defensive midfield position, hence his deployment further up the pitch.
His pressing up the pitch is decent but his abilities on the ball in final third leaves more to be desired from an attacking perspective.
Therefore, the move to push Kante forward hasn’t paid off excellently, and this has left the Blues limited in moving forward from the right position, especially against decent opposition.
Cesar Azpiicueta’s poor overlapping abilities this season, Kante’s poor attacking instincts, as well as Willian’s lack of goal threat consistently, have contributed to this.
The Blues travel to face Spurs, a very decent team, and we’ll need to fire from both flanks to stand a chance.
At a point in the last game against Everton, all attempted attacks were from the left flank. This speaks volumes of how average, the attacks from the right wing have been.
Meanwhile, despite reports of a new contract being offered to Kante, his future may not be at Stamford Bridge with Sarriball in place. I believe that Sarri is trying to accommodate him due to his popularity among fans and his impact at Stamford Bridge thus far.
N’Golo Kante is more of a square peg in a round hole in Sarri’s system and this can only go on for a while.
He’s been good though, but we wait to see how the future pans out for N’Golo Kante under Maurizio Sarri’s reign at the Bridge.