Fikayo Tomori to Leeds: A perfect fit?
Out-of-favour Chelsea defender Fikayo Tomori has been linked with a January move to Marcelo Bielsa’s Leeds United. Tomori has managed just 45 minutes this season and has become surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge.
How well does he suit Leeds?
Leeds have been called ‘a breath of fresh air’ this season with their free-flowing attacking football that regularly sees score lines with upwards of five goals. However, in order to take the next step into the top half of the league, Leeds will have to make sure that those score lines are more often in their favor by conceding less goals.
In all fairness Leeds’ defensive worries have not been helped by injuries, but still, Bielsa will be hoping that the poor showings at the back do not continue.
Fikayo Tomori could represent an excellent piece on business this window as the ball-playing defender would fit seamlessly into Bielsa’s system.
Tomori could start attacks with his fine passing ability while also helping to prevent one of Leeds’ biggest flaws, defending the counter-attack. Tomori is exceptionally quick, unlike many of the current Leeds’ defenders, so is an ideal solution to the problem of breaking down opposition’s counterattacks while running back to the goal after possession is lost.
|Tackles P90||Duels P90||Passes P90||Errors leading to goals|
|Fikayo Tomori - PL 19/20||1.1||5.4||79.2||0|
|Liam Cooper - PL 20/21||1.6||7.9||64.0||1|
|Robin Koch - PL 20/21||1.1||5.2||66.5||1|
Tomori stats vs Leeds defenders
While Tomori’s stats might not eclipse those of captain Liam Cooper, it is certain that Tomori performs better in the selected categories than Robin Koch.
Tomori produces a similar number of tackles and duels per 90 minutes than the German, but completes a much higher number of passes and did not produce a single error that led to a goal in his 15 appearances for Chelsea last season. This epitomizes Tomori’s composed demeanor on the pitch which would be a welcome addition to Leeds’ frantic team.
It would appear that Tomori could be an ideal partner for the more physical Cooper, as the pacier, more technically gifted half of the pair with Cooper the more-outright defender.
Tomori situation at Chelsea
The 23-year-old has been at Chelsea since 2005 and spent the 2018/19 season on loan at Frank Lampard’s Derby County where he won the club’s player of the season award. This prompted the now Chelsea manager to make plans for the defender upon his arrival at the start of last season.
However, after an injury setback midway through the season, Tomori failed to regain his place in the team. The Blues have since signed ex-PSG defender Thiago Silva who has partnered Kurt Zouma more often than not.
Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen have also been preferred when either of the two mainstays have been rested, leaving Tomori as the fifth choice and sometimes not even making the substitutes bench.