Chelsea continue their unbeaten run under Thomas Tuchel with a 2-0 win over Everton on Monday night — thanks to the manager’s three successful gambles.
Kai Havertz in false nine role
Tuchel made a bold decision to deploy Havertz to lead the line ahead of natural strikers such as Olivier Giroud and Tammy Abraham.
And it certainly paid off.
It was Havertz’s clever positioning inside the box that led to Ben Godfrey’s own goal and gave Chelsea the lead.
Havertz also won the penalty which gave Jorginho the opportunity to double the lead in the second half.
It remains to be seen whether this will be his new primary role going forward — but Tuchel has now had a proven new centre-forward option at his disposal.
Callum Hudson-Odoi on the left
The 20-year-old often played as a right wing-back under the new manager and did very well.
However, tonight’s game showed that Hudson-Odoi is most comfortable on the left flank which simply gives him the option to cut inside onto his dominant foot.
Playing as a forward also gave him the attacking freedom he would not have when playing as a wing-back.
The England international could have bagged an assist as well, but unfortunately, Havertz’s fine strike was ruled out by VAR for handball.
Christensen ahead of Silva
There is no doubt that Thiago Silva is an incredible defender.
However, the veteran defender struggled to compete with Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s aerial ability in the 1-0 loss at Goodison Park in December.
This time, Tuchel deployed Kurt Zouma, arguably Chelsea’s best aerial defender, to deal with the Everton ace.
While Andreas Christensen, alongside Cesar Azpilicueta, was there to defend against Richarlison’s pace.
The fact that Edouard Mendy faced just one shot on target in the game says it all.