Chelsea are eyeing a move for AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie, according to reports.
The Blues are looking to take advantage of Tiemoue Bakayoko’s excellent form at Milan to engineer a move for Kessie, as per Daily Star.
Bakayoko’s loan contract with Milan expires at the end of this season but the Rossoneri do have the option to sign the player on a permanent deal this summer. But now, Chelsea are apparently not willing to sell Bakayoko unless the Italian club offer Kessie in return.
Franck Kessie: A smart move by Sarri
Following his appointment at the start of the campaign, Maurizio Sarri has attempted to rejuvenate the Chelsea midfield and put his own stamp on it.
The addition of players like Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic has been a boon for the club but it has resulted in changed dynamics within the existing crop of players. Former player of the year, N’Golo Kante has been played out of position continually and while his quality has made sure he is not a total misfit, his strengths have been left unutilised.
On top of that, Kovacic is on a loan move while Ross Barkley has also failed to show any kind of consistency.
It’s probably needless to say that Danny Drinkwater is not included in Sarri’s plans and the former title winner is destined for a move away from Stamford Bridge this summer while Ruben Loftus-Cheek is certainly not a like for like replacement for either of those two midfielders from a tactical perspective.
And that’s where Kessie could come into the fray. The on-loan Milan midfielder is known for his aggression and tenacity in the middle of the park that allows him to restrict opposition ball-carriers time on the ball.
But, his game is not only restricted to just pressing as the Ivorian international is also an excellent tackler, who has averaged over one successful tackle per game. In addition, the 22-year-old is a good reader of the game, having averaged 0.9 interceptions per game.
Therefore, Kessie can be utilized in a midfield role, preferably as a cover for Kante, where his aggression and tenacity coupled with his excellent tackling will bring more urgency and vigour to the Chelsea midfield.
While the Ivorian star may not be ideally equipped to operate as the main pivot in the Chelsea midfield, his presence in the team will allow Kante to shift into that role, should Maurizio Sarri decide to relent and tweak his system in times of need or when Jorginho does need a rest.
And considering the fact that Kessie has attained an impressive pass accuracy of 88% this season, it is likely that he will be able to get to grips with Chelsea’s possession-based game under Sarri, thus making him an ideal fit for the Blues as they aim to pose a stronger threat for the title next season.
Stat courtesy: Whoscored