Hakim Ziyech’s former coach at Heerenveen Hans de Jong said the Morocco international is a natural number 10 before he forced him to play on the flanks.
There have been questions about the future of two Chelsea young wingers Callum Hudson-Odoi and Christian Pulisic with the upcoming Ziyech’s arrival.
Hudson-Odoi and Pulisic have both been struggling with multiple injuries this season and many expected them to be Chelsea’s attacking force next season until Chelsea announced Ziyech’s pre-transfer agreement in February.
Lampard likes to rotate his team-selection, but there are only two spots for wingers and one of them would likely be a squad player.
However, based on what Ziyech’s former coach said, Lampard could change his system to fit the three of them.
Speaking to the Sky Sports, De Jong who coached Ziyech in Heerenveen U17s said: “He was used to playing as a specific 10.
“When he came to me I made him play on the left of midfield so that he had to do a lot more defending.
“This was because in the younger age groups he was used to getting the ball and just being able to do whatever he wanted to do.
“He was not too satisfied with the role that I gave him but I knew that it would be to his benefit when he was older.”
And De Jong made a great decision. Ziyech has now become a versatile player who could play in midfield or on the flanks,. His versatility is actually one of the reasons which convinced Chelsea to sign him.
4-2-3-1 is now more tempting for Lampard
Based on this season, the 4-3-3 is clearly Lampard’s preferred system. But he might change his mind and opt for 4-2-3-1 if he has more options for the number 10 role.
Despite having only Mason Mount and perhaps Willian to play the number 10 role this season, Lampard has used the 4-2-3-1 eight times so far (Whoscored). For comparison, Lampard used 4-3-3 15 times and 3-4-2-1 six times.
Ziyech has played as a number 10 five times this season where he had an impressive two goals and three assists (Whoscored).
Having Pulisic, Ziyech and Hudson-Odoi behind a striker against teams who defend deep is surely an idea worth trying, isn’t it?
- Former coach believes Ziyech would overcome his biggest challenge at Chelsea
- Report: What convinced Chelsea to pull the trigger on Ziyech’s transfer
- FIFA shed light on when Ziyech will join Chelsea squad
- Chelsea defender speaks about facing Ziyech and sends a message to his future teammate
- What Mason Mount says about Ziyech ahead of his Chelsea transfer