Thiago Silva hails Chelsea teammate who may leave Stamford Bridge at end of season

Chelsea defender Thiago Silva was full of praise for Blues teammate Cesar Azpilicueta and highlighted the team captain’s leadership qualities.

Azpilicueta played a less prominent role under Thomas Tuchel at the start of the season, largely due to Reece James’ cementing his spot as the first-choice wing-back and Trevoh Chalobah’s emergence.

The 32-year-old is obviously still a reliable, versatile defender, though, and as James and Chalobah dealt with injuries, Tuchel has relied on his captain more recently.

His leadership both on and off the pitch, however, is the one thing that Chelsea will miss the most if he eventually leaves the club at the end of his contract this summer.

Silva, who clearly knows about being a leader himself, was even impressed by the former Marseille man.

Photo by John Berry/Getty Images

“Azpilicueta, since my arrival, was one of my main supports,” the Brazil international told DAZN (via Mundo Deportivo).

“There are a number of players who have the qualities to be captain, and he is one of them. He is a player who tries to unite, who tries to help others.

“He’s a spectacular player, a super-professional who certainly deserves to be where he is.

“Azpilicueta has tremendous qualities.”

Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images

The licence Chelsea are currently operating under after the sanctioning of Roman Abramovich has put every contract talks, including with Azpilicueta’s representatives, into a halt.

The defender himself seemed unsure when asked about his future recently.

While a report in Spain suggested Barcelona are in discussion with the Chelsea skipper over a potential summer free transfer move.

Keep up to date with all the latest Chelsea news and opinion by following The Chelsea Chronicle’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.

A Chelsea fan who loves football statistics. Studied sports journalism at the University of Sunderland.