Tag Archives: Chelsea

Chelsea sign Edouard Mendy from Rennes

As confirmed by the club’s official website, Chelsea have completed the signing of goalkeeper Edouard Mendy from Ligue 1 side Rennes.

The 28-year-old Senegalese international has penned a five-year contract with the Blues after the club had agreed a £22m deal with the French club.

Mendy began his career at AS Cherbourg in the French third-tier where he was till 2014. He spent a year without any club, before returning to action with Marseille B in 2015 and went on to join Reims a year later.

Tipsters suggest Mendy could have an incredible career with the Blues. If you are one of those highly enthusiastic betting individuals, go in early and and make use of all the early season advantages to the best use. After all Chelsea’s summer has been super busy and considering all the signings they have made, Lampard and Co will have a strong season competing against the likes of Klopp’s heavy metal Liverpool and Guardiola’s runners up last season Manchester City.

What does Mendy bring to the club?

Mendy spent three years at the club, before signing for Rennes in the last summer transfer window. He made an immediate impact at the club, helping them finish third in Ligue 1 in 2019/20 and qualify for the UEFA Champions League.

Chelsea had been in the market for a new goalkeeper, following a series of underwhelming displays by current first-choice custodian Kepa Arrizabalaga.

The Spaniard has been error-prone throughout his stint at the club, most recently committing a major gaffe against Liverpool in the Premier League last weekend.

Kepa Arrizabalaga

Mendy is expected to push the Spanish international for the No.1 spot at Stamford Bridge.

“I’m so excited to be joining Chelsea. It’s a dream for me to be a part of this exciting squad.” (h/t BBC)

The 28-year-old becomes Chelsea’s seventh major signing of the summer following Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, Ben Chilwell, Malang Sarr, Thiago Silva and Kai Havertz.

With that in mind, what does the future of Kepa Arrizabalaga look like? Post your comments below.

Wayne Bridge’s Life as a Poker Player After Retiring from Football

wayne-bridge-retires-from-football

The career of a football player is relatively short, often ending many years before they hit 40-years-old. So, former footballers need to find something to do with their time. Many turn to management or coaching, with Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard being among the recent examples, others pursue philanthropic interests, and others continue to seek that competitive surge of adrenaline off of the field through other games, such as poker.

Be it Texas hold’em or five-card poker, the globally-loved game of cards and wits is very popular among sports stars, especially footballers, with the likes of the two-time World Cup-winning and former world-record transfer Real Betis winger Denilson known to be a poker aficionado. Wayne Bridge is included in this crowd of high-profile former footballers who play poker in their retirement, taking competitive play very seriously, be it in live tournaments, in online poker rooms, or promotion meets.

Wayne Bridge’s playing career

For much of his career, Wayne Bridge was on the cusp of the England starting XI, with injuries and a certain Ashley Cole often blocking his passage to the upper echelons of football. His career started in the city of his birth, Southampton, who he signed for in the summer of 1996. Just two years later, he made his first-team debut, featuring primarily on the left-wing for the Saints until he moved permanently to left-back in the 1999/00 season.

At left-back, Bridge’s performances caught the eyes of other Premier League teams, with his fitness, consistency, and near-impeccable disciplinary record keeping him a first-team regular for Southampton. During his time with the Saints, Bridge for the most consecutive Premier League appearances by an outfielder, clocked at 113 between March 2000 and January 2003.

By the close of the 2002/03 season, Bridge had compiled 158 games, three goals, and one assist for the Saints, earning a £7 million move to Chelsea in what would prove to be Claudio Ranieri’s last season before Jose Mourinho came to the club. Bridge was part of a huge summer of spending at Stamford Bridge which included the likes of Hernan Crespo, Juan Sebastian Veron, Claude Makelele, Joe Cole, Glen Johnson, Damien Duff, and Adrian Mutu.

With Chelsea, Wayne Bridge found himself with the regular starting role at left-back in his first season in blue. Not known for his scoring ability, Bridge scooped a crucial goal for his team near the back-end of the 2003/04 seasons, netting the game-winning goal against Arsenal in the Champions League quarter-final.

Highlights of the Arsenal 1-2 Chelsea Champions League quarter-final, featuring Wayne Bridge’s game-winning goal.

Known for his longevity and consistency, a serious ankle injury in February 2005 derailed his campaign and forced Chelsea to sign Asier del Horno from Athletic Bilbao. Used sparingly in cup games, Bridge was loaned out to Fulham in the winter of the 2005/06 season, showing that he’d returned to top form to earn himself a place in England’s World Cup squad.

Upon his return from the World Cup in Germany, Bridge found England’s number one left-back, and one of the best in the world at the time, Ashley Cole had joined Chelsea. Bridge still managed to tally 33 appearances in all competitions in the 2006/07 season, but his game time continued to wane over the next two campaigns. In January 2009, however, another big-spending, building club forked out for Wayne Bridge.

Mark Hughes’ money-chucking Manchester City saw Bridge’s situation as a prime opportunity to add some class to their backline, sending £10 million to Chelsea for the left-back. He joined in a winter spree that included Craig Bellamy, Shay Given, and Nigel de Jong, which followed a huge summer in which Robinho, Shaun Wright-Philips, Vincent Kompany, and Pablo Zabaleta all came to the City of Manchester Stadium.

Bridge would go on to tally 58 games for City, but a managerial switch led to the likes of Gael Clichy and Aleksandar Kolarov usurping the England-capped defender, making him a . He would eventually go out on loan spells to West Ham United, Sunderland, and Brighton & Hove Albion. In the summer of 2013, Bridge joined Reading in the Championship on a one-year deal but was released after 12 appearances, leading to his retirement.

Bridge’s life after football and love of poker

A video of Wayne Bridge featuring on the football television show Soccer AM earlier this year.

Wayne Bridge is a well-known and well-liked figure among English football fans, with multiple television show appearances since his retirement keeping him in the public eye. He’s appeared on Soccer AM as well as I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! As is the case with many retired footballers, however, Bridge still has the desire to compete, and so, he’s turned to the game of poker.

The former England left-back takes his poker rather seriously, appearing in many one-day poker live tournaments, playing a lot of online poker, and even contending against fellow former football stars. Bridge has described his style as ‘kamikaze,’ and while it was some light-hearted fun when he met Paul Ince heads up, his certainly shined through, chucking down 300, scaring Ince off of the play and leading him to fold.

His love of poker started during his loan move to Brighton, where he and his teammates would play the card game in hotels and on the coach for away games. He has claimed that Adam El-Abd was the easiest to play against as he struggled to hide the fact that he had a good hand, with David Lopez being the toughest to read.

Do any skills transfer from poker to football?

While they are both very different, with one being much more physically demanding than the other, some skills have proven to be transferable between poker and football. The most important between the two is the abilities to keep concentrated, be patient, and be disciplined. With only 18 yellow cards and not a single red card – double yellow or straight – Bridge proved himself to be very disciplined on the field, which will help him at the Texas hold’em table.

In a lengthy game of poker, concentration and patience are crucial to being able to capitalise on the frailties of your opponents. In football, full-backs especially need to keep their concentration as they need to keep an eye out for who are traditionally the most skilful and quickest players on the pitch, wingers, while also needing to gauge whether or not they should join the attack.

The desire to compete among professional footballers continues to burn within them even after they’ve hung up their boots. Texas hold’em, Omaha, and five-card draw provide the ability to be competitive while using some of the same mental skills deployed by professional footballers.

End of an era: Olivier Giroud, the modern-day Arsenal legend

olivier-giroud

End of an era: Olivier Giroud, the modern-day Arsenal legend

When Arsenal announced that Olivier Giroud has joined Chelsea on a permanent deal in the dying hours of the January transfer window, it pulled at the heartstrings of every single Gunners’ fan.

The towering Frenchman joined the club at a time when the fans were fuming after Robin van Persie’s infamous transfer to Manchester United. Since then, the player struggled to make room for himself in the hearts of the Arsenal faithful. Although he acted as a regular starter, the player failed to score that often and it led to greater frustration among the fans.

However, despite the many setbacks he has faced during his time with Arsenal, Giroud has still managed to leave as a hero. Over the years, Arsene Wenger utilised him solely as a backup option while strikers came and went. To be fair, the Gunners have struggled with finding a solid centre-forward for quite some time now. At present, they have the clinical Alexandre Lacazette and the lethal Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but back when it was just Giroud, things were quite different for the club.

No matter how hard Giroud fell, he always managed to wrestle back into the first-team and perhaps more than anything else, his fighting spirit is what the club will miss. There was no setback too big for him to overcome and he always provided a lot of competition to whoever played ahead. In fact, over the last couple of seasons, in particular, the French striker not only displayed consistency but also proved to be an extremely reliable option from the bench.

The biggest complaint that the fans had about him was that he is not speedy enough to surge forward and net goals on any given day. While the pace part is true, many people failed to realize that Giroud is a natural poacher. Every team needs a poacher – somebody who may not start regularly but is utilised more as an impact sub to come in during the dying minutes of the game and net a goal or two.

And to that end, Giroud is arguably one of the best in the Premier League. His soft touches and movement around the penalty area make him a delight to watch. In the last couple of seasons, the fans started looking at him as a vital figure of the team and he took that reputation up a notch in the initial few months of the current season. Fellow Frenchman Alexandre Lacazette’s arrival meant that Giroud would have lesser time on the field and his form would crumble. While the first part was true, the towering striker simply rose like a phoenix from the ashes.

giroud

He did not let Lacazette’s inclusion affect his game time. Instead, he used every single minute on the field to prove everybody watching that he deserves to be on the field. It is almost as if the less he played, the more he improved and started delivering results in important games throughout the season. However, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the team, it would have been tougher for him to appear regularly – even as a substitute, perhaps.

To be a player who primarily comes on and makes an impact towards the end of the game is very tough. Sir Alex Ferguson used Javier Hernandez that way and it yielded effective results for the longest time. More accurately, Edin Dzeko and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer were the ones who made it a trend and since then, the quest to find an impact sub has been a priority for many teams. One reason why this method works so well is that all these players enter the game with fresh legs and full of energy. Unlike the others whose energy starts wearing off, players like Giroud enter the field just with the sole agenda of scoring goals.

He can confront opposition defenders quite directly and is skilled in one-on-one situations as well. In addition to that, he can compete for the ball in the air while also displaying some elegant skills on the field. He is definitely no Thierry Henry but Giroud has managed to carve out a niche for himself as a modern-day Arsenal legend. There is no doubt that the Gunners will miss an influential player like him but he has given everything he can to the club and perhaps it is now time for him to experience newer pastures.

giroud

His new job at Chelsea will include similar requirements as well. The Blues already have Alvaro Morata but with Michy Batshuayi out on loan to Borussia Dortmund, they were in dire need of an experienced back-up striker. Moreover, they have been in need of a poacher for quite some time now and who better than Giroud to do the same?

Strikers may come and go at Arsenal but what Giroud has done will definitely stay on forever and it is time for him to write a new chapter at Stamford Bridge.

Jose Mourinho – The Lone Ranger Of English Football

jose-mourinho

Jose Mourinho – The Lone Ranger Of English

If there was ever a list of the most misunderstood managers in football history, Jose Mourinho’s name would probably be on top. People either love him or hate him and there seems to be no middle ground for the Portuguese tactician. Having coached some of the biggest teams across Europe, Mourinho is undoubtedly one of the most prolific and skilled managers of our times.

He might come across as brash, argumentative and arrogant but he is also charismatic, passionate and it is quite evident that he genuinely loves the beautiful game. To that end, the word ‘misunderstood’ seems to do ample justice to Mourinho. They say that the true mark of greatness is when one learns from and improves their mistakes and that is something the manager has done on a couple of occasions.

Back when he was in charge of Chelsea, Mourinho was accused of not allowing enough chances to youngsters. Of course, the Blues’ loan policy itself does not provide much scope for that to happen and yet a lot of fingers were pointed at Mourinho. However, he continues to be one of their most successful managers and whether or not Chelsea fans like to admit it now, they were all gaga for him at one point.

One can understand as to why they may not view him with as much reverence now. After all, he is managing one of their biggest rivals in the Premier League. And at Manchester United, Mourinho has proven that he is not one to shy away from allowing youngsters to flourish. Be it Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Jesse Lingard or Scott McTominay, the manager has been extremely generous with providing them opportunities and that has reflected in the way these players have blossomed.

Lingard was labelled a failure and among a lot of other things and yet, he is one of United’s most influential players this season. There has been a lot of talk about how Pep Guardiola has transformed Raheem Sterling but not many have credited Mourinho with the way he has brought Lingard out of his shell. The Man City star was touted as one of the most exciting talents even a couple of years back but the Manchester United academy graduate could never get things going for him at Old Trafford. However, at present, Lingard’s impact has been unparalleled and Mourinho deserves full credit for the same.

jesse-lingard

Even when it comes to transfers, the Special One has made a difference for United. Before he took charge, the Red Devils were struggling to land a deal for Marouane Fellaini from Everton and now, they have signed the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Paul Pogba. What he has done for the club so far is quite impressive even if a good majority of the fans seem to be cribbing about what he has not done.

One of the biggest complaints the fans have about him is the fact that he often resorts to using unnecessarily defensive tactics – especially against the big teams. More often than not, Mourinho has been blamed with accusations of ‘parking the bus’ and ‘playing boring football’. To be fair, Old Trafford has always been used to watching intense counter-attacking plays under the tutelage of the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson. However, times change and it has been quite a while since his retirement. Since then, David Moyes and Louis van Gaal changed a lot of things at the club and now Mourinho is doing the best he can.

While they have played defensively on several occasions this season, one must bear in mind that this was most frequent when the likes of Pogba and Fellaini were injured. United’s midfield situation is far from ideal and to have two of their key midfielders out at the same time, really affected their fortunes. Regardless, there have been numerous occasions when Mourinho employed intense attacking tactics to guide United to victory but nobody seems to want to talk about that.

mourinho

On some level, the media often downplays Mourinho’s best work to make him seem like the villain all the time. For example, the United manager recently mentioned in his press conference that he did not need to act like a ‘clown’ to prove his passion for the Red Devils, which was understood to be a veiled reference at Chelsea manager Antonio Conte’s passionate displays of emotion. To that, Conte responded by pointing out that perhaps Mourinho is suffering from senility. Now, one needs to recognize the difference between healthy (or unhealthy) banter and personal attacks. What Mourinho said fell into the former category whereas Conte’s remark turned it into a more personal battle.

In response to the senility comment, Mourinho brought up the instance where Conte received a four-month ban in August 2012 for failing to report the alleged match-fixing at Siena during the 2010-11 season. The United manager explained that he would never be caught in such a situation and immediately, the media started painting him as the bad guy, even though it was the fiery Italian manager who first indulged in making personal attacks. Once more, Conte was let off while Mourinho was labelled rude, insensitive and what not.

To sum up the Special One’s career, he will forever be known as the manager that was outspoken and brash but perhaps not many will know of his true influence and impact. He is aware of the fact that not many people adhere to his decisions and tactics but he is brave enough to follow his own path and act as a solitary soldier even when the whole world questions him – and that is what his legacy will be about in the years to come.

Why The Mid-Table Battles Are More Exciting Than The Title Challenge

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It is every football lover’s dream to witness a close finish to a season. Nothing beats the excitement of uncertainty and unpredictability when it comes to football teams vying for places in the points table and it also creates a sense of competition that in its intangible way can unite scores of fans across the world. Generally, La Liga matches are believed to be more passionate but the ones who love the English Premier League, feel like the Spanish league isn’t competitive enough.

The Premier League did have a couple of seasons where uncertainty shrouded the winner’s name until the very end but over the last two campaigns, it has been a little too clear. For example, last season, Chelsea were the runaway winners by a mile and this time, Manchester City looked like the winners from day one. Although this time the gap is a lot more, Antonio Conte’s men were in a similar position to Guardiola’s last term and everybody had a fair idea of who was going to win.

Even if a club does not establish itself as winners at the very top, rarely do we ever get a sense of nail-biting and gut-wrenching emotions while witnessing title challenges in the Premier League. At least by the time the season hits the halfway mark, we all have an idea of who is likely to win and more often than not, that team ends up winning. And even then, it ends up being a big team that has won the league title in recent times. Chelsea and Manchester City have both won the titles in the 2014-15 and 2013-14 seasons respectively and they are doing it again. Barring Leicester City’s miraculous win in the 2015-16 season, we have not had any sort of competition when it comes to deciding the winner.

It was only back in the 1994-95 season that Blackburn Rovers won the Premier League title but after that, the Foxes were the first team outside the top six to win the league. Since my allegiance lies with a top-six club, I’m not necessarily complaining but it is human nature to seek competition in the sport. Hence, off-late, the mid-table battle seems to be a lot more intriguing than the question of who will win the league.

Unless another Leicester City-esque miracle awaits us next season, another top six club will dance its way to the title and this is something that is likely to continue. However, the battle for the mid-table spots is something that only keeps intensifying as time goes on.

When the new season started, newly-promoted sides Burnley, Brighton, Huddersfield Town and Newcastle United were all expected to be favourites for relegation. And yet, we were all in for a surprise when the Clarets subjected defending champions Chelsea to a shock defeat on the opening day. That seemingly set the tone for the rest of the season in terms of the smaller sides.

Since then, all these clubs have been in spectacular form and even managed to stun some of the big boys in the Premier League. Even Watford, to that extent, have been quite impressive. In fact, Burnley and Watford had even broken into the top six momentarily. The Clarets can still hope for a top six finish, considering they are just 4 points behind 6th-placed Arsenal. Watford are currently in 10th spot and it is a bit of shock since they were also being touted as contenders for the top six.

Meanwhile, the remarkable comeback made by the likes of Leicester City and Everton are truly commendable. Both clubs got rid of their managers and appointed Claude Puel and Sam Allardyce respectively. Although there were a lot of doubts surrounding the capabilities of these managers, the Foxes and the Toffees have managed to climb out of relegation danger and are now sitting comfortably in the top ten. This was, again, unexpected since Newcastle and Huddersfield were doing so impressively that many people assumed they would solidify themselves in the top ten.

However, Huddersfield are not too far away. Currently gracing the 11th spot, David Wagner’s men are just 1 point behind 10th-placed Watford. They cannot afford to get too comfortable since 12th-placed Brighton are exactly a  point behind them as well. Thus, the upcoming clashes will once again change the course of the clubs in this area.
Stoke City and Southampton have to very careful to avoid relegation while Newcastle United and Crystal Palace are slowly climbing their way out of the trouble.

Now, Rafa Benitez brought his team close to the top six but then something went amiss and they started dropping points severely. Lately, their performance chart showed a much-needed upward curve and a hard-fought away win at Stoke City can prove crucial in the relegation battle.

Palace, on the other hand, were bottom of the table for a good majority of the season but then new manager Roy Hodgson managed to bring them out of danger. That said, they are still just 2 points above the danger zone and it will be interesting to see how far they can go. Bournemouth might be occupying the 15th spot now but they have the quality to turn it around in the 2nd half of the season. Besides them, West Brom and Swansea City continue to be relegation-threatened but considering the roller-coasting nature of the league, it might be too soon to say that they are likely to get relegated.

English Premier League – An Era Of Underrated Players

Shaka Hislop
Shaka Hislop

English Premier League – Rating The Underrated Players

Ever since the Premier League began, we have had the good fortune of watching some of the best footballers play against each other. These players were famous for their many talents on the field and even today, there are so many players in the league that are worshipped and idolised by their fans across the world. Love and support for them only seem to be increasing as commercial factors like merchandising and advertising have come into play. They are endorsing some of the biggest companies while also proving to be marvellous on the field.

Be it a Beckham or a Ronaldo, there appears to be no end to the list of companies wanting them to endorse their products. However, amidst all the glitz and glam, there are some players who get lost. In every field, there are a number of people who do a fair share of the work and walk away with accolades while there are also others who do the real work but get lost somewhere in the middle. Football is no different and even more so in Premier League. Calling them the underdogs seems rather unfair given their contribution, so let’s stick with calling them underrated.

Underrated. That is the favourite word of many pundits to describe a player who does his work on the field but seemingly ends up receiving less credit for it. So, what really makes a player underrated? Is it the lack of endorsement deals or the lack of recognition for their hard work? To understand the answer to that question, one must keep in mind that players have been dubbed ‘underrated’ from a time when the commercial aspect of football hardly mattered.

To take you back in time, Shaka Hislop was one such player. Newcastle United were expected to win the 1995/96 Premier League season but an injury to their goalkeeper Hislop changed the course of their fortune and they failed to make it. Hislop may have won two runners-up medals but he was of pivotal importance for the Magpies as well as his country Trinidad and is arguably one of their best goalkeepers till date. Hislop was not a celebrated player but he was crucial for his teams in an unparalleled sense.

Ray Parlour of Arsenal
Ray Parlour of Arsenal

When it comes to defenders, Bobby Moore is undoubtedly touted as one of England’s best defenders. However, Nottingham Forest fans may disagree. A central defender by trade, Des Walker was famous for making his well-timed surges to manoeuvre the ball away from even the toughest of opponents. In fact, very few central defenders have been able to match his level of craftiness and speed, which further establishes his credentials. And yet, he is not one of the more popular names in football.

Cut to not-so-long ago and you have Emile Heskey. Now, a lot of Liverpool, Wigan Athletic, Aston Villa and Leicester City fans might get put off by the mere mention of his name but the fact remains that his contribution was necessary to every club he played for. He lacked self-belief to a large extent and one cannot really blame him for that. Playing in the Premier League is a tough job as it is and to have scores of fans hating you makes it all the more difficult. However, very few players lacked his creative vision up front and for all that he did, Heskey truly deserves more appreciation.

As long as we are talking about Liverpool forwards, names like Dalglish, Rush and Aldridge come to our mind. And yet one of their most prolific strikers till date continues to be Peter Beardsley. To be honest, he was the one who kept creating scoring outlets for Rush and Aldridge. Without him, could the duo have proven to be as effective? Most likely not.

Speaking of making contributions, we all know of players like Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira, Pires and Bergkamp. After all, they were all crucial parts of Arsene Wenger’s stunning ‘Invincibles’ side. But how many of us rate Ray Parlour? The midfielder often filled in for either Vieira or Gilberto Silva and often lit up the stadium with his unlimited energy. He always boasted of an important eye for the goal and was truly one of Arsenal’s finest.

Fernandinho
Fernandinho

This trend of overlooking players making important contributions seems to have continued until today. Unless a player is snazzy enough with blue hair like Tiemoue Bakayoko or possesses the goal-scoring skills like Harry Kane, it seems quite tough for them to shine through and make a name for themselves. One such player in our present crop of the Premier League’s unsung heroes is Harry Arter. He is one of Bournemouth’s most influential players and his energy has been key to a lot of their good fortune this season. He may not score flashy goals but he is the glue that holds the Cherries together.

Even Manchester City’s Fernandinho is underrated in a similar fashion. He does play for an attack-oriented team with some of the best players like Sergio Aguero, Kevin De Bruyne, David Silva and Raheem Sterling, which often sees his fame get lost amidst all the power up front. But his influence in terms of holding the defence and the attack together has been spectacular to watch this season. Adept at making a mean, tenacious tackle and boasting of smoothness while in possession, Fernandinho can even be regarded as one of the best midfielders in the Premier League right now.

It seems unfair for them to not receive their share of credits but it is what it is. Perhaps even a decade or two down the line, we will have these underrated players who work tirelessly for their team and yet their contributions would not be celebrated as such. Regardless, what makes these players all the more remarkable is the fact that they continue to do their job despite this sense of unfairness.

Sanchez Is A Lot Like Eden Hazard – Blues Fan Favourite Comments On Arsenal And Chelsea Stars

hazard

Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink has drawn similar comparisons between Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez and Blues forward Eden Hazard.

Hazard has regained his scintillating form this term which helped Chelsea to the League title two seasons ago and with eight goals already this season the 25 year old is looking as dangerous as ever for the Blues. The Belgian scored a superb counter attacking goal against Manchester City to wrap up the points at the Etihad with a 3-1 win over their title rivals.

Alexis Sanchez on the other hand has been equally impressive for the Gunners in the front-line; their attack now has a speedy smooth flow about them when the Chilean is in the squad. With 11 goals this season including a hat-trick last weekend over West Ham the 27 year old is really pushing for success in terms of titles at Arsenal.

Despite being used as a striker this season, ex-Chelsea striker Hasselbaink believes Sanchez is a better player when used as a winger like Hazard.

‘Alexis Sanchez, for me, is not an out-and-out striker,’ Hasselbaink told Sky Sports (via Daily Express).

‘He is a little bit between. He can come from wide. He is more dangerous coming from wide. Sanchez and Hazard are quite similar’ Hasslebaink added.

Antonio Conte’s Chelsea are currently leading the Premier League with 37 points while Arsenal are close behind in second with 34 points. The Blues haven’t lost a Premier League game since a 3-0 defeat by the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium in September.