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Comment: Why Chelsea Must Sign Ousmane Dembele This Month to Back Thomas Tuchel

With Ousmane Dembele's Barcelona future looking bleaker by the day, an opportunity has presented itself to Chelsea to act now and show their backing to Thomas Tuchel in the public eye.

While, yes, Chelsea could wait until the summer and bring Dembele in on a free whilst also showing backing to the German head coach, they must act now to really state their intentions in the 2021/22 season.

Since his appointment as head coach in January last year, Tuchel has only made three additions to his squad.

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One was, of course, club-record signing Romelu Lukaku, which showed ambition from the board to back their head coach. However, the other two have hardly featured for Chelsea. Understandably, Marcus Bettinelli was brought in as third-choice goalkeeper but Saul Niguez has had an underwhelming start to his Chelsea career on loan.

With Lukaku failing to live up to the hype since his arrival and Chelsea clearly chasing Erling Haaland last summer before re-signing the Belgian, it is time to give Tuchel control and go all out for one of his targets.

It has been reported that Tuchel is 'insistent' on bringing Dembele to Stamford Bridge after coaching the 24-year-old during their time together at Borussia Dortmund.

During their time together, Tuchel turned Dembele into the player which led to Barcelona forking out a huge €135 million to sign him.

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Whilst the last four years have not been ideal for the French international, if anybody can turn his fortunes around it is his former coach Tuchel.

Chelsea's attack have dried up in recent weeks and whilst there is an abundance of quality up front, there is not one forward on form.

The Blues are not currently singing from the same hymn sheet and last season saw Jorginho finish the season as Chelsea's top scorer, a feat that looks likely of repeating itself once again.

Tuchel has heavily criticised his team for their lack of chances created in recent weeks.

"We could have had much more chances, that’s what I’m critical about. The ball losses were too early and we were too poor in decision making and timing. That was not on the level that we need on this kind of level of football match." he said.

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It is clear that the Blues are lacking creativity and with Dembele available as Barcelona wish to sell their player in January rather than lose him for free at the end of the season, an oportunistic signing must be considered by Chelsea.

Tuchel clearly wants Dembele. He is not happy with the way his side are playing and needs a creator, exactly what Dembele is. For a cut price in January, Chelsea can bring in a fairly experienced head despite his young age.

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Dembele has dealt with the pressures of playing for one of the biggest clubs in the world and he would provide Chelsea with something that they do not yet have in their squad, a direct runner.

Dembele would take on defenders, use his flair and pace to get the fans up off the edge of their seats, something Chelsea have missed since the departure of Eden Hazard.

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Yes, Chelsea may have to fork out money for the French international in January when they could get him for free at the end of the season. 

But what price do the Blues board put on trophies?

Hypothetically, let's say Chelsea have to pay £20 million for Dembele but he is an instant success, bred with confidence as he is reunited with Tuchel, who could certianly use a boost himself.

Imagine Dembele helps Chelsea seal their place in the top three, contributes to a Club World Cup and Carabao Cup victory. Would that not be worth the fee alone for the Chelsea board?

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However, it is not always a fairytale when a manager is reunited with his former players as we have seen with Tuchel this season. Christian Pulisic, like Dembele, made his breakthrough under the German but has struggled for game time and not hit his previous form in the second spell under Tuchel.

Another obvious downside to Chelsea bringing in Dembele is the fact that they have a plethora of options in attack, with Hakim Ziyech, Kai Havertz, Lukaku, Timo Werner, Christian Pulisic, Mason Mount and Callum Hudson-Odoi in attack with Armando Broja set to come back from loan next season.

However, this could not all be bad if Chelsea are to form an elite squad able to compete with the likes of Manchester City.

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The Citizen's have world class players for every position and if Tuchel wishes to turn to a back four, as he has trialled this season, eight players to play across four positions seems to be the right balance.

A 4-2-2-2, as has been tried recently, could help Chelsea's chance creation as they look to a future, one potentially without Andreas Christensen, Antonio Rudiger and Cesar Azpilicueta.

The loss of the defenders could force a more permanent switch to a back four, with the Blues attack-heavy if Dembele comes in, but this may not be all bad.

It is time to back Tuchel and to go for it this season with several competitions still on offer for Chelsea this season.


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