Noni Madueke’s arrival at Chelsea could put Graham Potter under pressure.
Noni Madueke: Chelsea’s sixth signing of the January transfer window, Noni Madueke, may have unintended consequences for manager Graham Potter. The Englishman is under intense scrutiny at the club following a poor run of form, and while Todd Boehly has publicly supported him, he could soon find himself out of work if things do not improve.
Express Sport explains three ways in which the arrival of Madueke could increase pressure on Potter as the former Brighton manager attempts to turn around his Chelsea tenure.
There is no justification for poor goal-scoring form.
Chelsea has struggled to score goals this season. With 22 goals in 19 games, there are only seven teams in the Premier League who have scored fewer goals this season. It has been the most significant issue holding the club back as they sit in a disappointing 10th place.
The Blues now have an embarrassment of riches in attacking positions, with Madeuke joining Mykhaylo Mudryk at Stamford Bridge. It’s difficult to see how the club can continue to score as infrequently as they are now if Potter has no place to hide or excuses.
What system should I use?
It’s difficult to see how Chelsea’s squad will function with so many attacking players. Potter will be tasked with finding a formation that will allow him to get the most out of the talent at his disposal, and finding a way to fit them all in will be difficult.
If the 47-year-old fails, Chelsea will be barred from competing in European competition, which would be disastrous for the club, not least in their fight against Financial Fair Play regulations. It’s difficult to imagine Boehly sticking by his manager in that scenario, leaving the Englishman looking for a new job.
Chelsea’s bloated squad will almost certainly breed discontent in some quarters as players miss out on game time. Hakim Ziyech, Christian Pulisic, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang are likely to fall far down the pecking order. When Christopher Nkunku arrives and Romelu Lukaku and Callum Hudson-Odoi return from loan spells, the situation will only worsen.
Departures are unavoidable, but they may not be enough to keep the squad together. Player power was a factor in the departures of Frank Lampard and Thomas Tuchel, and if it emerges again, which appears likely, Potter may follow.