David Luiz featured for Chelsea again yesterday afternoon with a heavily strapped right leg. That makes it four games in a row that the Brazilian has played through the pain barrier, and while his standards haven’t dropped through that period, it has worrying implications.
While Kurt Zouma, John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic are ready to fill in for Gary Cahill at a moment’s notice, the lack of a backup for Luiz is more concerning. If there was a ready-made replacement to play in the former PSG man’s role, we undoubtedly would have seen them at some point. As it stands, Terry would be the best replacement given his passing ability, but his lack of mobility and reluctance to move ahead of the defensive line make him an imperfect replacement.
Nathan Ake, impressing on loan at Bournemouth, has played as a midfielder before, and given a few heavy duty months in the gym over the summer to try and make him closer to Luiz’ physique, he could be the best replacement we have next year.
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