Joe Cole says Chelsea player is a 'fantastic talent' but he needs to be stronger

Joe Cole has described Chelsea player Hakim Ziyech as a “fantastic talent”, albeit he wants to see him become stronger.

Ziyech, 28, scored his fifth goal of the season last night in Chelsea’s 1-1 draw away to Brighton in the Premier League.

The left-footed attacker scored with a powerful low finish from outside the box before Adam Webster equalised for the hosts at the Amex Stadium.

It’s a difficult period where none of the Blues attackers are proving to manager Thomas Tuchel they should be ever-presents in the starting line-up.

For Ziyech, he’s been in and out of the starting XI all season due to inconsistency in his performances.

Cole has waxed lyrical about the individual ability of the Moroccan forward, but argues his strength is an area of his game he needs to improve.

He’s a lightweight attacker with a small frame that opponents can physicality dominate. In fairness, his agility and balance works in is favour as one of his greatest strengths, so it’s difficult to imagine him as a different kind of player.

“He’s a fantastic talent, he probably hasn’t hit the ground running in the Premier League, it’s very different to the Dutch league, you see him often in duels and he can be stronger,” Cole told BT Sport 1.

“One thing you can’t question is ability, on the ball he’s second to none, his technique, he’s a fantastic player.”

Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images

Ziyech playing for Chelsea career

If Ziyech’s form doesn’t pick up considerably from now until the end of the season, all parties should look at his situation in the summer.

He’s clearly a great talent who’s got exquisite technique with the ball at his feet, but that hasn’t yet seen him replicate his success from his Ajax career into his spell at Stamford Bridge.

Craig Burley was recently very critical of a Premier League display of his. It was encouraging to see him respond with a goal against Brighton, though.

It should be a defining few months to see if Tuchel can find a way to get the best out of Ziyech in his system.

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A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.