“Papy Djilobodji, score some goals for Chelsea”. I can already hear it now.
What a strange couple of days for Chelsea fans. Stones? Marquinhos? Abdennour? Manolas?
Bids went in for the lot, all to be rejected. And when you hear some of the numbers flying about, I’m actually quite glad. Chelsea put in a 40.4 million pound bid for the 21 year old Marquinhos, an absurd amount of money. The tactic Chelsea have gone with is clearly a short term option, until longer term centre back options are considered in the January transfer window.
At a cut price of 4 million, it’s important to remember it’s not all about expensive, well known players. Cesar Azpilicueta was 6 million pounds, and look at him now…
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) September 1, 2015
Let’s be honest, most people hadn’t heard of Papy Djilobodji before this weekend, and I was definitely one of them – although he’s actually been linked with Chelsea for over two years.
Djilobodji has played as a defensive midfielder for Nantes, but is much more at home as a centre back.
He’s a tall lad, 6ft 4, and is pretty pacey considering his height. Yaya Toure rates him highly and has been quoted saying he’s “seldom seen a defender with this good a left and right foot”. Thanks Yaya.
Sky Sports have said:
Djilobodji ranked fourth in Ligue 1 for clearances in 2014/15 (8.3 per game) and in the top 10 for interceptions (3.3 per game). Only 16 players won more aerial duels per game than his 3.1 – in contrast, Chelsea’s top players in this category last season were Gary Cahill with 3.3, followed by John Terry with 2.6.
For the Everton game in a few weeks I’d really like to see some changes to our line up. Not necessarily bringing in Papy just yet, but I’m sure he will get a bench place if he’s fit. Baba Rahman deserves a go, and I’d be comfortable moving Cesar Azpilicueta over to left back and trying things without Branislav Ivanovic.
Something I never thought I’d say.
With that, and maybe also resting Nemanja Matic for a week – you can blame it on International Duty if you want Jose – I’d expect to see some positive improvements to our game.
January is going to be a tough month, but I refuse to panic just yet. Welcome Papy and fingers crossed for no injuries for everyone on International duty – almost the whole squad!