Who Will Make It To Chelsea’s Starting XI After The Arrival Of Juan Cuadrado

Chelsea made a great deal to boost their side on deadline day when they completed the signing of Colombian star Juan Cuadrado. Cuadrado who is a top quality Right Midfield player would fit right into Chelsea’s tactics. But of course, Willian is already settled in the team which leads the table. There is going to be intense competition for the Right Wing spot as two players with many similarities fight for the spot.

1. Hardwork

Both Willian and Cuadrado are very hardworking players, who put on the miles and utilise their athleticism on the pitch to the fullest. But there is a difference in the style of hardwork that the players put in. While Willian is extremely defensive minded in his approach but also involved in offensive moves, Cuadrado focuses more on offense but works in defense as well. Cuadrado would be the ideal winger who does his offensive job exceedingly well and would keep track of his fullback and check his runs. Willian is an engine who would work hard to win possession back, but this sacrifices his offensive game.

2. Crossing and overlaps

Chelsea lack a strong crosser in the team. While Ivanovic is a very average crosser, Filipe Luis, the best crosser in the team is usually on the bench. Cuadrado is a very good crosser and he can be someone who can start games on the right side to provide width to the approach play and cross for Costa, Drogba and Remy.

Willian is an average crosser and rarely moves into crossing positions but is more of a passer. Willian cuts into the center to let Ivanovic go on an overlapping run from the Right Back position. Ivanovic bombing forward helps Chelsea get brute force into the box from the right side, but it also troubles Chelsea that he can’t get good crosses in. Cuadrado would work well both ways – cutting in or running at fullbacks and beating them to enter crossing positions. Ivanovic can be exempted from crossing duties and he can make his offensive runs from the central areas to exploit the width on offer.

3. Versatility and decisiveness

Cuadrado can play in any attacking midfield position and has also played add a right wing back. This makes him more versatile than Willian, who plays only in attacking midfield. Though, Willian’s pace, power and work ethic does enable him to occupy any midfield position so the question of real versatility disappears. But it is the decisiveness in which Cuadrado has been consistently better than Willian. He gets his fair share of goals and assists.

In 13-14 season, Cuadrado had 11 goals and 5 assists in Serie A compared to Willian’s last season’s tally of 4 goals and 2 assists. This season, Cuadrado hasn’t been at his best but still has 4 goals and 4 assists to Willian’s 1 goal and 1 assist. Based on pure decisiveness, Cuadrado beats Willian. Mourinho is bound to give the Colombian equal chance to compete with his Brazilian colleague, but it his highly likely that Cuadrado would start ahead of Willian once he settles in. Willian with his hardworking style would always pose a threat to the starting spot of both Cuadrado and Oscar, and an obvious substitute option for Mourinho.