Nations League final a glimpse into how Chelsea could line up next season – TCC View
While Spain and France contested the Nations League final yesterday, Chelsea followers will have been watching the game through blue-tinted glasses.
Wearing such spectacles probably made them wave their Spanish flag for the evening.
Luis Enrique started Marcos Alonso and Cesar Azpilicueta at full-back for the second game running.
Unfortunately for the Stamford Bridge duo, neither could prevent France from lifting the trophy.
Didier Deschamps’ men came from behind to snatch a 2-1 victory thanks to a stunning strike from Karim Benzema and a controversial Kylian Mbappe goal.
Spain went ahead through Mikel Oyarzabal, who could also have equalised late on had he been able to convert Alonso’s precise pick-out.
Blues present and future?
The Chelsea left-back put on a confident display for his country, a continuation of his fine club form.
He attempted a clever free-kick that fizzed past Hugo Lloris’ post, before making a terrific intervention to deny Mbappe in the second half.
On the opposite flank, Azpilicueta had a customary solid evening; efficient rather than exciting.
For France, they can thank Benzema and Mbappe’s scoring exploits, but also the dynamic midfield duo of Paul Pogba and Aurelian Tchouameni.
While Pogba pulled the strings, Tchouameni tied the team together with some tough tackles and important interceptions.
The 21-year-old gave an insight into how the reigning World Cup holders will cope without N’Golo Kante in the future.
It’s a situation Chelsea might want to emulate.
Recent reports have linked the Monaco starlet to Stamford Bridge, identifying him as the possible heir to Kante’s throne.
Last night’s performance certainly caused Blues fans to imagine life without their minuscule no.7, picturing Tchouameni as their revolution leader.
And the Blues may be dipping their hand into the French squad again when the January window pops open.
Jules Kounde also featured for his nation on Sunday, a player well known to Chelsea supporters.
Sevilla’s excellent defender almost joined the Champions League holders in the summer but a transfer fee couldn’t be agreed.
There’s every possibility Thomas Tuchel’s employers will revisit Kounde’s representatives in a few months.
Especially if Antonio Rudiger fails to renew his contract and is allowed to leave south west London.
Changes ahead for Chelsea?
If that’s the case, Tchouameni and Kounde could possibly line up together internationally and domestically, as long as Chelsea take action.
They may well be sharing a dressing room with Alonso and Azpilicueta rather than competing against them.
Thanks to the Nations League showpiece, followers of the Blues have been given a peek into their potential team for next season.
Alonso and Azpilicueta on the flanks, Kounde at centre-back, Tchouameni in midfield.
Even better, France lined up with a 3-4-1-2, a set-up similar to Tuchel’s preferred formation.
All this is entering into the realms of Football Manager.
Dreams could become reality, however, if Chelsea put their business wheels in motion.