Where in the Diamond Would Franck Ribery Fit?
Latest rumors from Goal.com suggest that a certain Franck Ribéry is the main target of the team on Kings Road.
While I may disagree with him being the primary target, one cannot deny his great skill in attacking and bringing energy to whatever side he is playing for.
But where would he fit in Ancelotti's Blues Diamond? He is an attacking winger, after all. Plus, attempts to move him to a more central role in Bavaria have not worked out well.
Would he play opposite of Lampard and behind Cole in the diamond? Would he play at the tip? Would he play up front with Drogba or Anelka as a striker?
While I have covered this in a previous article, now there is a decent sample size of games to gather data about the diamond along with what the best lineups have been.
So far, Essien, Lampard, Ballack, and Cole/Deco with Anelka and Drogba up front has proven not only to be the best formation for the team, but they're boardering as the best line up in all of Europe.
Ribéry would almost certainly play on the left side of the diamond with Lampard on the right and Cole at the tip.
The question is whether or not this provides any upgrades over the current formation with Ballack and Lampard on the sides.
Ballack has been quite the enforcer and distributor while providing leadership and set-piece threats.
Ribéry is not nearly the defender and passer that Ballack is, however, his offensive abilities are in a league that very few in the world can match. His pace and dribbling would give even the the stubborn and physical defenses of the Premiership nightmares, opening up holes for the rest of the squad.
And perhaps there is the reason Ribéry would be a good fit for Chelsea's diamond. The teams that have contained Chelsea best have spread the field and held an extra defender to keep the control away from the powerful and intelligent play of Lampard, Essien, Ballack, and Deco.
With Ribéry in the lineup they lose a significant defensive presence, but with Cole at left-back and Ribéry in front of him other teams would invariably slant towards that side giving Lampard more room on the opposite flank.
This would mean teams could not clamp down the way they have been able to, and give the diamond even more freedom to dominate possession and the center of the pitch.
It is for this reason that Ribéry may be a good fit for Chelsea's midfield diamond, and though I would rather see Sergio Kun Aguero and/or Alex Teixeira join the Blues, I certainly would not be against the electrifying Frenchman becoming the latest member of the club of Kings Road.
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