After an injury scare, Chelsea may have to call on Saul Niguez sooner than expected.
Saul arrived at Chelsea late on transfer deadline day from Atletico Madrid, but he could make his Premier League debut sooner than expected.
Chelsea has made a new signing. After N’Golo Kante’s injury scare, Saul Niguez may be forced to play sooner than Thomas Tuchel had hoped. Saul arrived to Stamford Bridge on deadline day from Atletico Madrid in a loan deal with the option to buy at the end of the season.
It had been in the works for the majority of the summer, with Atletico eager to get the midfielder’s wages off their books.
They were unable to find a permanent home for the 26-year-old and instead decided to allow him to leave on a temporary basis as the window closed.
Chelsea have long been regarded a favourite to recruit Saul, who assisted Atletico Madrid in winning La Liga last season.
Their curiosity was piqued on the penultimate day of the transfer window, and the Blues were able to close the deal despite a last-minute snag.
Saul’s greatest strength is combining defense and attack, which is a crucial talent for midfielders in Tuchel’s 3-4-2-1 system.
Another factor in Chelsea’s decision to sign the Spanish international was the limited number of central midfield choices available to Tuchel.
On deadline day, Kante, Jorginho, and Mateo Kovacic were the only genuine central midfielders in the roster, though Mason Mount can also play deeper.
However, the majority of the season is still ahead of them, with Chelsea seeking to advance further in the Champions League, as well as the Carabao Cup and FA Cup.
With so many games to play, the Blues’ squad depth will be important if they are to have a successful season.
And their decision to sign Saul has already paid off, with Kante withdrawing out of France’s squad for this week’s World Cup qualifiers.
The 30-year-old has cited an ankle injury he worsened in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Liverpool as the reason for his absence.
He sustained the injury during the Super Cup victory against Villarreal and was left out of the squad for the match against Crystal Palace to allow it to recover.
It seems to have healed sufficiently for. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”