Kaka and Chelsea Could Be an Experiment in Expression and Goals
How time flies, right?
A year ago I wrote my first article about the tactical changes and possibilities Chelsea would have if they signed Kaka. Unfortunately, he was soon to sign with Los Blancos and become a part of a new generation of Galacticos.
Flash forward a year later and once again, the Brazilian maestro is unsettled and the perennial rumors of him departing for Stamford Bridge have once again started.
While I think the chances are still low for him making the switch directly to Chelsea, the situation has somewhat changed to more favorable.
Kaka is coming off an injury-riddled and trophyless season at the grand circus of Galacticos; while Chelsea has completed a domestic double with his former mentor in Carlo Ancelotti.
This is certainly not enough to completely sway him to coming to London, but it surely does not hurt.
Now that we have gone through the theory and reasons of transfer, the big question becomes how would he fit in?
At this time last year the Blues were preparing to use Ancelotti's favored formations: the 4-4-2 'diamond' that emphasized controlling the midfield with fine passing and ball winning in the middle third, and the 4-3-2-1 'Christmas tree' that is known for its stout defensive qualities and control in the back of the pitch.
Both formations were used with moderate to good success throughout the season and intermingled with the standard 4-4-2 and 4-3-3 formations.
While Kaka was made world famous by playing at the tip of the diamond, his role at Chelsea would probably be different.
From the first day of the season the diamond showed some flaws. Hull City's 'crescent' formation and wide attacks caused major trouble and though the Blues triumphed and managed to subsequently win the Premiership, it was only through Ancelotti's flexibility to his favored tactics that allowed this to occur.
Ancelotti saw that Lampard was wasting his time at the tip and played him slightly deeper allowing him to attack and control the ball more often instead of waiting to link the field.
Before Essien went down with injury, he provided a solid base for the diamond, but was at his brilliant best when he was allowed the freedom to roam and attack.
Joe Cole, Deco, and Malouda all saw both great success and periods of mediocrity at the tip of the diamond as well.
Malouda was also put out wide, but only when he moved closer to the central was he able to reach the form that made him Chelsea's best player; once again, it was the freedom to move about that brought him to new heights.
Has the pattern become clear? It is the freedom of expression that lead to Chelsea's creative triumphs that saw them smash home more goals than any other Premiership side in history.
So how would Kaka fit in with these other midfielders? My suggestion is the 4-2-3-1, something that Chelsea has never really used outside of random arrangements on the pitch.
At the base would be Essien and Lampard, both players like to play box-to-box and though they are the "deep" men; they would still have the chance to attack after winning the ball.
In the upper midfield Kaka, Malouda, and whoever Chelsea decide their right winger of the future to be (Anelka/Kalou/Kakuta/Cole/Stoch) would be responsible for orchestrating the attack and link to a big forward in Drogba or even Fernando Torres if rumors are to be believed.
Now it still may only be a pipe dream, but Kaka in a 4-2-3-1 would give fits to other teams. His passing, dribbling, and creativity have not been seen in the Premiership before and with the talents around him almost every pass would break the defense and keep oppositions back peddling.
One can dream, right? Like the dreams of a domestic double that have come to fruition after just one year.
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