Mauricio Pochettino has revealed that Mykhailo Mudryk’s recent return to the starting XI has played a part in Ben Chilwell’s relegation to the Chelsea substitutes’ bench.
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The 26-year-old appeared destined for a prominent role in the Argentine’s new-look side when he was made a key part of Chelsea’s leadership group in the summer.
Chilwell looked back to his best after an injury-hit campaign last season, featuring prominently in a draw against Liverpool and in a more attack-minded role against Luton Town.
Pochettino’s desire to get the pace and direct running of Mudryk into his starting XI has, however, prompted Pochettino to cut Chilwell’s playing time, with Levi Colwill, nominally a centre-half, deployed at full-back.
‘I am so happy with Levi and the way he is playing. He is providing the team with a very good balance,’ said Pochettino ahead of tomorrow’s Carabao Cup tie against Brighton. ‘Chilly has the possibility to play tomorrow.’
‘We were using him maybe not in his best position because he was a winger,’ said Pochettino when asked about Chilwell’s lack of game time.
‘That is why when we start to play with Mischa, our thought was to keep Levi in the position.’
When asked about the form of veteran centre-half Thiago Silva, Pochettino added: ‘Thiago is already doing well,’before turning the conversation back towards his reasoning behind Colwill’s inclusion at left-back.
‘The way we want to play and the moment we recover some offensive players, he is very good. He is strong, you need a strong defensive line, the data we have, we are one of the best in the league.
‘When you have an offensive player in front sometimes you don’t need an offensive full back.’
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