On-loan Chelsea player tops the tackling charts for his entire league after six matches

Ian Maatsen is already making a name for himself away from Chelsea this campaign in the light blue colours of Coventry City.

Maatsen lowered himself into the Championship whirlpool in the summer, signing for the Sky Blues on a season-long loan.

Having already dipped his toes into League One, the young full-back was ready to make a splash in the second tier of English football.

And his dive into life below the Premier League will have scored a near-perfect score from the judges so far.

Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

Maatsen made of tough stuff

The 19-year-old has started all six of Coventry’s league matches, four of which have been victories.

Stationed at left-back or left-wing back, the teenager is proving to be a very handy weapon for Mark Robins.

Especially in a defensive sense.

According to WhoScored.com, Maatsen has made more tackles per game (3.7) than any player in the Championship up to this point.

In total, opponents have been dispossessed by the Dutchman 22 times, another league-high.

Photo by Mick Walker – CameraSport via Getty Images

Thanks in part to the addition of Chelsea’s Cobham prodigy, Coventry can currently boost the joint third meanest defence in the division.

They sit behind Lee Bowyer’s Birmingham City, who are wielding a Chelsea product in their ranks as well.

Juan Castillo also swapped blue for blue in July, yet hasn’t quite had the same impact as Maatsen.

Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

He made a short substitute appearance on the opening day win over Sheffield United but has since been resigned to cup fixtures and Under-23 outings.

Both Castillo and Maatsen are left-sided defenders, both hailing from the Netherlands, so it will be intriguing to see who comes out on top at the end of the term.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.