Jason Cundy highlights Chelsea duo who allowed Reece James to thrive in Newcastle win

Jason Cundy credited two Chelsea players provided Reece James and Ben Chilwell the freedom and space to attack in the 3-0 win over Newcastle United on Saturday.

James, of course, was the protagonist of the game after scoring a brace, but more importantly, breaking the deadlock when Chelsea needed it the most.

The 21-year-old also created more chances (three) than any other player in the game.

On the other hand, Chilwell’s fine goalscoring streak in the Premier League has unfortunately come to an end, but he still managed to create two chances at St James’ Park.

Former Blues defender Cundy was clearly impressed by the wing-back duo’s performances, particularly James. However, he also highlighted the two wingers who created the space for James and Chilwell with their runs.

Photo by Newcastle United/Newcastle United via Getty Images

“In our system, in terms of creativity, the wing-backs are arguably one of the most important areas we need to attack,” he said during Chelsea’s post-match Matchday Live programme.

“The way that [Newcastle] played, they were unashamedly five at the back. It was not like us, where we play a 3-4-3 [with players] that can move around, it was a 5-3-2 that they played.

“So the spaces out wide is harder to get into.

“What you saw was [Hakim] Ziyech and Callum [Hudson-Odoi] making inverted runs to try to take their wing-backs inside to make the space for Ben and Reece.

“The longer the game went on, [Newcastle] dropped deeper and deeper. Reece started to find more space, not in behind [their defenders], but in front of them.”

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

James best right wing-back in the country, says Cundy

Cundy further praised James’ outstanding goals, comparing the technique to that of some big names.

“Brilliant technique. You’d expect that from someone like David Silva, Kevin de Bruyne or Eden Hazard,” he added.

“These are two strikes that if you don’t have the composure and control your body, these go everywhere.

“As I said, he’s arguably the best right wing-back in the country right now.”

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Gerry is a Chelsea supporter who has more than five years of experience in online publishing. He started out writing for Chelsea fan blogs during his high school years, before writing for several local sport news outlets. After graduating in NCTJ-accredited sports journalism MA at the University of Sunderland, he has worked as a freelance writer for The Chelsea Chronicle since 2020. He is a big fan of football statistics and strongly believes that sooner or later, the xG Gods always catch up. He is also a proud member of Michael Ballack fan club.