The arrival of Hakim Ziyech at Chelsea wasn’t exactly that of a fairy tale at first. Picking up an injury in the Blues’ first pre season fixture against Graham Potter’s Brighton and Hove Albion sparked questions as to how long it would be until the Moroccan Winger could make a start at Stamford Bridge in Frank Lampard’s new look Chelsea side.
Ziyech missed out on Chelsea’s first four fixtures through a knee injury, however since recovering, in his first four starts he has created an average of 3.79 chances per ninety minutes and is locking in an average of 1.42 assists per ninety minutes, stats of which look very positive considering he is still adjusting to the Premier League’s style of football and has recovered from an injury picked up very early on in the season.
Perhaps Ziyech’s best performance for Chelsea to date would be the most recent clash against Sheffield United at Stamford Bridge. In the thirty fourth minute a deep cross found Ben Chillwell at the far post which put Chelsea in front, before a seventy seventh minute set piece delivery (almost identical to the goal he scored for Ajax against Frank Lampard’s side) found Thiago Silva who managed to be first in the air after losing his man in the box.
It’s obvious that the Wizard Winger does not lack any creative flair, he quite often picks the long difficult ball over the simple pass, and when it works out it is satisfying to watch and brings a breath of fresh air to the midfield section of Chelsea’s squad. If he can maintain the figures that he’s producing stats wise, Chelsea will definitely looking to be competing for the title this season and at the very least will be looking at a top four finish.
Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has been full of praise for his new winger, telling Sky Sports “we played against (Ziyech) in the champions league last season, he’s a top class player and he impresses you even more when you work with him”
With the Blues currently sitting at fifth in the Premier League, Ziyech and other new squad additions such as Timo Werner and Kai Havertz to name just two, could prove to be pivotal in Chelsea’s title hopes this season.