Chelsea have made a decent start to the season with typical Jose Mourinho efficiency mixed in with a couple of negative results as the Portuguese coach learns more and more about his side.
Mourinho has urged his players to show him why they deserve to be in his best eleven, admitting he’s harbouring doubts over several positions in the current side.
“Of course, I don't know. But the players have to give me the answers. I cannot dig and dig and dig looking for the best team. The players must give me the answer - I have some doubts in some positions and I think it's normal,” he told Chelsea TV.
So what is Chelsea’s best eleven? Here’s our version.
GK – Petr Cech
Cech is the best goalkeeper Chelsea currently have available. He’s experienced and all elements of his game are solid; leadership, organisation, command, distribution and ability to make saves.
RB – Branislav Ivanovic
Mourinho has been very complimentary about the way Ivanovic has played at right-back so far this season. He offers strength, presence and resilience out on the right hand side of Chelsea’s back four.
CB – Gary Cahill
Cahill showed superb early form and looked like England’s best defender in the recent round of World Cup qualifying matches. He’s quick, he’s strong and he’s just as good in the air as he is on the floor.
CB – John Terry
JT offers leadership, experience and reliability. Mourinho knows he can trust Terry in the middle of Chelsea’s defence. He doesn’t have the pace he once enjoyed but he compensates for that with his reading of the game.
LB – Ashley Cole
Cole remains one of the best left-backs in the world. He’s effective going forward and creating extra width and defensively he’s solid, whether he’s pressing the winger or tucked in close to Terry.
DM – David Luiz
Mourinho’s problem playing David Luiz in central defence seems to be that he stays too high up the pitch. He can eradicate that problem, pushing him slightly further forward into the defensive midfield role he played effectively last season.
RM – Willian
Any one of three or four centrally based midfielders could play this position but Willian is more suited to a wide role. He’s quick, has fast feet and will be a threat out wide and cutting in onto his left foot.
CM – Frank Lampard
Lampard’s organisation and leadership in the middle of Chelsea’s team is imperative. He’s also one of the hardest midfielders to mark because he makes runs from deep positions, breaking into the opponent’s penalty area late.
AM – Juan Mata
Mata has been urged to make changes to his game by Mourinho and when those changes have been made, he needs to come straight back into the side. There are few better playing at the top of the midfield behind the striker.
LM – Eden Hazard
Hazard is the best left sided midfield player that Chelsea have ability. He’s never going to be an out and out winger but he links up well with Cole on that side of the pitch and offers a threat moving inside.
ST – Fernando Torres
The striker position could literally be taken by any of the centre forwards at the club at the moment. However, Torres is more suited to the current crop of Chelsea midfielders than any other player because he’s played with them for longer.
What’s your best Chelsea XI?
image: © Jason Bagley