Former player questions Chelsea defender’s ambition, says he should leave club

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Cesar Azpilicueta should leave Chelsea at the end of the season.

That is the view of former player Gus Poyet, who has questioned the Spanish full-back’s ambition following his decline in playing time.

Having been at Stamford Bridge for over a decade, Azpilicueta, 33, has undoubtedly been one of the club’s most important and loyal players. Wearing the captain’s armband since 2019, the 33-year-old has helped guide the side to nine major trophies, including two Premier League titles and the 2020-21 Champions League.

However, with age now against him and having just one year left on his contract, there is an underlying expectation that next season will be the Spaniard’s last in London.

But Poyet thinks this summer’s transfer window should be when the former Marseille defender moves on due to other players, including midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek, moving above him in the side’s pecking order.

“When he’s [Todd Boehly] going through four coaches, there is something else – the squad, the system, the number nine [Romelu Lukaku] not being there, the pressure – it’s not the same to play for Chelsea winning than to play for Chelsea losing,” Poyet told CaughtOffside’s DEBRIEF podcast.

“I’ll make an example – Azpilicueta. I don’t know what’s going through the head of Cesar Azpilicueta but so many people play ahead of him in his position that you have to think ‘Okay, I’m not going to play. I’m not here next season’.

“[Ruben] Loftus-Cheek plays in his position, so you have to start thinking something is not right, the same for other players on the pitch.”

During his 11 years with the Blues, Azpilicueta, who has represented Spain on 44 occasions, has scored 17 goals and provided 56 assists in 504 games in all competitions.

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