If Maurizio Sarri is looking to get the fans back onside tonight, he’s GOT to mix it up with his substitution choices.
Sarri is under pressure at Stamford Bridge following a string of abhorrent performances. The Chelsea players clearly do not understand how to play his style of football, with the fans being left confused as to what it is the Italian is attempting to execute.
Prior to his arrival, we heard tails of ‘Sarri-ball’, a footballing philosophy comparable to that followed by the likes of Johan Cruyff and Pep Guardiola. We’re beginning to wonder if it’s merely a myth. Chelsea have been nothing short of shocking since the start of December.
One thing that Sarri has been heavily criticised for is his substitutions. He brings on the exact same players for their positional counterparts game-in, game-out. It’s growing tiresome. Have a look at these numbers, they depict the sheer lack of flexibility.
Maurizio Sarri has made 124 substitutions since he’s in charge of Chelsea:
13x Barkley on for Kovacic
8x Pedro on for Willian
7x Kovacic on for Barkley
7x Giroud on for Morata
6x Willian on for Pedro
— Kristof Terreur 📰🎥 (@HLNinEngeland) February 19, 2019
Tonight, as well as starting Callum Hudson-Odoi, Sarri has to display a degree of tactical flexibility that we haven’t seen before. If he is unable to do that, or even attempt it with creative substitutions, we’ll be left further questioning his managerial competency.