Poch must bench Chelsea’s 4/10 star who lost the ball 10x v Palace

The 21-year-old has talent but had a game to forget on Monday night.


It has been a strange old Premier League season for Chelsea this year, with some impressive wins here and there being seriously overshadowed by some dreadful defeats.

Mauricio Pochettino hasn’t been able to get his young side firing in quite the way he’d like yet, but with two wins on the bounce, things are at least looking a little rosier than they were just a week ago.

There were several impressive performances against Crystal Palace on Monday night from Enzo Fernández, Cole Palmer, and Conor Gallagher.


Still, there was one stand-out performer for all the wrong reasons, and he should be dropped for the game against Manchester City this evening.

Noni Madueke’s game vs Palace in numbers

Now, while the team as a whole played quite well against the Eagles, there were still a few poor showings here and there, with the Standard’s Nizaar Kinsella giving several players 5/10 for their performances, including the likes of Axel Disasi, Thiago Silva, Ben Chilwell and Moises Caicedo.

However, there was one player who managed to score even lower than that on Monday night, Noni Madueke.

The former PSV Eindhoven winger bagged himself a 4/10 from Kinsella on the night, with the journalist explaining that while the 21-year-old looked like Chelsea’s ‘most potent attacker in the first half,’ he had to be marked down for being ‘at fault for giving away the opening goal.’

Unfortunately for the Barnet-born “nightmare”, as U23 scout Antonio Mango described him, he was taken off at halftime, so he didn’t have the opportunity to redeem himself on the night.

That said, considering he lost possession ten times in just 45 minutes – once every four and a half minutes – and registered a paltry expected assists figure of just 0.05, it might’ve been a blessing in disguise.

Noni Madueke’s vs Palace
Minutes 45′
Goals 0
Assists 0
Expected Assists 0.05
Shots 0
Possession lost 10
All Stats via Sofascore

The dynamic wideman is clearly a talented player – he showed that against Aston Villa – but after a performance like the one he put in against Palace, he needs to be dropped for a game or two, especially as Poch has a winger in the side who has already excelled against City this season.

Raheem Sterling must start against his former side

So this might not be the most popular opinion at the moment due to Sterling’s somewhat lacklustre outings in recent games, but with Madueke being so ineffective against the Eagles earlier this week and the magnitude of today’s game, it just makes sense to start the experienced Englishman.

Poch doesn’t even have to make too many other changes, as the former City man has already played ten games on the right wing this season, and his return of seven goals and eight assists in 30 appearances is relatively impressive given the team’s overall performances this season.

However, the main argument for the Kingston-born winger’s inclusion is his performance against Pep Guardiola’s behemoth earlier in the season, a showing which Kinsella awarded him a 9/10.


The “incredible” winger, as described by talent scout Jacek Kulig, scored the Blues’ second goal of the game to give them the lead and was a general nuisance throughout the game.

Raheem Sterling’s game vs City
Minutes 98′
Goals 1
Expected Goals 0.45
Expected Assists 0.14
Key Passes 1
All Stats via Sofascore

He might not be at his very best this season, but Sterling’s know-how and experience will be vital for Chelsea if they are going to get anything out of their trip to the Etihad.

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