How Tuchel’s Chelsea could line up with Erling Haaland
Chelsea are one of the clubs leading the way with regards the race to sign Borussia Dortmund forward Erling Haaland.
Although Dortmund want to keep the Norway ace on their books, new Blues boss Thomas Tuchel has reportedly asked the Stamford Bridge outfit to sanction a move for the player.
And the race to sign Haaland is heating up, with the player’s agent, Mino Raiola, and father travelling to Spain on Thursday to talk business with Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Chelsea, though, are also firmly in the picture.
The Blues spent in excess of £220m (€250m) ahead of the 2020/21 campaign, bringing in Kai Havertz, Timo Werner, Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell, Edouard Mendy and Thiago Silva.
Though there have been moments of quality and cohesion among the squad this season, a shocking run from December into January cost Frank Lampard his job. Tuchel, however, has lifted Chelsea from the middle of the table into the top four.
Havertz and Werner, in particular, have disappointed, with the former RB Leipzig striker only netting four times in the league so far.
Even though Tuchel still reportedly sees him as a key figure going forward, he still wants Haaland to lead the line, which could mean Werner playing, again, in his unfavoured position on the left of the attacking midfield three behind the striker.
Potential Chelsea line up with Haaland
Thomas Tuchel has favoured a 3-4-2-1 formation since arriving at Chelsea. If he continues with this system, it would see Haaland deployed in the centre forward position, supported by Mason Mount and either Kai Havertz or Timo Werner.
Marcos Alonso and Declan James will continue to be favoured as wing-backs, while N’Golo Kante and Jorginho play centrally.
The defence will be used roughly in the above configuration, with Thiago Silva flanked by Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta.
Should Tuchel revert to his favoured 4-2-3-1, this is roughly how Chelsea might look.
One of the reasons that has been attributed to Werner’s struggles this season is that he has not consistently been deployed in his favoured central position.
Unfortunately for him, any acquisition of Haaland means that he will continue to be forced wide unless Tuchel opts to play with a front two, which is unlikely as the German favours either a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Having previously been viewed as the new main man, Werner would undoubtedly have to play second fiddle to the Norwegian.
Tuchel has been brought to Stamford Bridge, partly, in order to get the best out of Werner and Havertz, two of his compatriots.
Even though both players can speak English fluently, there were rumours circulating that Lampard was unable to get over the nuances of his tactics across to them, which Tuchel shouldn’t have a problem with.
Christian Pulisic, meanwhile, worked with his new manager at Dortmund, who is reportedly a big fan, so he can expect to see plenty of minutes, too.
Whether Haaland is there or not, Tuchel will likely focus on the development of Werner, Havertz, and Pulisic as the men to lead the forward line of his Stamford Bridge revolution.