Chelsea FC defender Branislav Ivanovic has stated that the Blues will do everything necessary to stop Jamie Vardy and Leicester City on Monday.
The Blues travel to the King Power stadium to take on the Premier League leaders as they look to push for a top four spot. Chelsea will have to find a way to contain both Jamie Vardy and partner-in-crime Riyad Mahrez with Ivanovic admitting that dirty tactics may be optimal.
Speaking to the Independent in an in-depth interview, Ivanovic acknowledged the quality of the former non-league striker and stated that kicking him is a very feasible option to take.
Some of the strikers don’t like [it] when you kick [them]. You kill their confidence. Vardy at the moment is running a lot and is making the space for other players as well.
Vardy recently broke Ruud Van Nistelrooy’s long-standing record of scoring in consecutive Premier League games. The 11th goal that pushed him over the line was ironically scored against Manchester United and after taking the week off, the Englishman will undoubtedly be raring to get back on the scoresheet on Monday night.
However, while the media’s attention may be focused on Vardy at the moment, Chelsea would be naive to ignore the other players in Leicester’s attack. Riyad Mahrez proved his worth last weekend as he stepped up with a hat-trick against Swansea City to compensate for Vardy’s blank.
While Shinji Okazaki’s production may not be able to compete with that of the aforementioned duo, his creativity and flair certainly help the Foxes mix up their play.
Claudio Ranieri, meanwhile, will be eager to get one over his former employers. Ivanovic, though, believes that Chelsea are on the verge of turning matters around.
This season, as every season here, is so long. The good thing about us is we can still change it. We can make a good season.
The club’s comfortable 2-0 victory over Porto will boost the squad’s confidence as they head into Monday’s crucial clash. This was the first time that the Blues looked both reassured in defence and (relatively) clinical (Diego Costa excluded) in attack. If Chelsea are to fulfill their ‘dream’ of finishing in the top four, they will need to carry that form into the Premier League starting on Monday against Leicester.
However, such is the frailty of this current Blues side, a negative result at the King Power could easily plunge this club back into chaos. Mourinho currently has sharks swirling around him, waiting to pounce at any moment, and thus the boss will need this victory to alleviate some of the pressure.
Let’s just hope that Ivanovic’s kicking tactic works.