Does the Rise of Ramires This Season Mean Chelsea Do Not Need Sami Khedira?
The winter transfer window may be more than two months away from opening, but it hasn’t meant the rumor mill has stopped turning.
Clubs across Europe remain linked with a host of stars, and Chelsea are no different, being tipped to raid Real Madrid for Sami Khedira, the German midfielder who flourished under Jose Mourinho’s guidance during his three years in the Spanish capital.
Spanish newspaper AS claims the Blues will make a move for Khedira "at any cost," but given the talent Mourinho now has at his disposal at Stamford Bridge, are such drastic measures really required?
This season has seen Ramires come of age, regaining his form of 2011-12 that had many questioning if his emergence spelled the end for Frank Lampard. And in the three months or so he has spent under Mourinho’s command, he’s earned a place right at the heart of this new-look Chelsea side.
Such has been his impact, Ramires has worked his way back into Luiz Felipe Scolari’s plans in the Brazilian squad, too, as we count down to next summer’s World Cup.
Indeed, his club and international managers have seen his worth, but Ramires’ performances this season haven’t earned him the plaudits they should have outside of the dressing room—a fact largely down to much of the media focus being on Chelsea’s attacking midfield, with the absence of Juan Mata producing headlines and filling column inches.
While that drama has been chugging along, however, Ramires has quietly gone about his business, becoming one of the Blues’ most-vital players.
He may not be seen as a ball winner, a player in the defensive mould of Khedira, yet the stats show appearances can prove deceiving where the Brazilian is concerned.
Ramires has made more tackles than any other Chelsea player this term (28), out performing his colleagues in midfield and defence. What's more, he has made more passes (464). He’s proved adept at breaking up play, helping start attacks, while two goals and assists this term show his defensive responsibilities haven’t impacted his threat further forward.
Do Chelsea need Sami Khedira to strengthen their midfield?
Football is a forever changing sport, with tactics being adapted to suit new trends and squads. Ramires is a fine signal of that.
Whereas the general consensus over the summer was that Mourinho needed to add a midfield general to his squad, Ramires is proof it's actually the opposite.
There is more to Khedira's game than simply winning possession, but alongside Ramires, the Blues have players who complement the Brazilian.
A move for Khedira would add another household name to the ranks, but at what cost? Mourinho is finding his formula at Chelsea, and it's one that his youngsters will make a considerable contribution.
Nathan Ake, Marco van Ginkel, Josh McEachran—they're all names Chelsea fans have pinned their hopes on in recent years. He has Ramires already, so perhaps now is the time he looks a little closer to home to help complete his project.
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