Rumors abound that Dayot Upamecano from RB Leipzig could be a serious transfer target for Chelsea in the summer transfer window. It would be a great move for the Blues in any of a number of ways. Upamecano (and/or Niklas Sule, both would be best) would be a transcendent transfer for Chelsea this summer. He’d be an addition of the highest order. Check out his highlights if you have any doubt. Upamecano, as a previous article explained, is a uniquely talented center back who can do it all, and then some.
Upamecano is a rare player who possesses almost all of the attributes in a player of the position that any football club could wish for. According to Bild via Sports Illustrated, Thomas Tuchel could help to sway the defender to Chelsea.
That is very good news. The magnetic abilities of Tuchel in this case would be awesome. Upamecano is 22 years old and won’t be 23 until October. Yes, he’s young. That’s sounds great. He’s played in a good league and in the Champions League. Yes, he’s experienced. He’s about 6’1″ tall and almost 200 lbs. That’s a good size, height-wise (not optimum), but weight-wise, great. And, he can play. He can really play.
Upamecano is a very unusual center half in that he can not only defend with great purpose, tackle with authority (watch out if he’s on your case), but the young man can also drive the ball up the pitch with a vengeance. That separates him from most of the rest. Fikayo Tomori, who the Blues may have tossed away this January is a somewhat similar player. Tomori may have a bit more pace (not much), and he can also advance a ball up a pitch. But, Upamecano has both pace, power, more size, and predisposition. And when he gets on the fly, he’s like a locomotive barreling down the track with purpose. Midfielders admonition: “tackle at your own risk”. He’ll run over you and/or send a great pass to a teammate to advance the ball in transition.
Chelsea fans have been spoiled over the past year or two. First, Christian Pulisic arrived and then helped salvage what appeared to be a lost season. Then, Hakim Ziyech, Timo Werner, and then Kai Havertz arrived almost unbelievably. Chelsea didn’t usually land this type of young player. Occasionally, but not too often. And then, all of a sudden, this flood of these terrific, young players. OK, there were extenuating circumstances. The ban. Then the self-imposed ban. And other more significant factors intervened. The outlook, promising. Actually great, but this is the Premier League and expectations have to be tempered because it’s a transition and a half from any other league and many of these players were from outside. Upamecano would seem to be another of these amazingly great additions, at least in this fan’s view.
This space has advocated for Upamecano. For Sule. Add those two and the central defense is complete. Add one and it is greatly enhanced. Tack on Jerome Boateng who has had mixed reviews in the Chelsea world, to one of these, fine. Boateng, in the absence of Sule, adds dimensions missing from the Chelsea backline: height at almost 6’2.5″ (if you think Upamecano doesn’t have enough of that attribute), and toughness. Above all others. the Blues have to add this to their side this offseason. Toughness. Toughness. Toughness. John Terry-like, take-no-prisoners, toughness. It doesn’t exist in this team now. They need it or their ceiling will never be as high as it should be with this great collection of talent.
Sign Upamecano and this team will be greatly enhanced on the backline. He’s a great young player. He has size. Strength. Tackling ability. Passing acumen. Dribbling. And, dynamic pace for a man of his size. Upamecano would be a terrific addition to Chelsea this summer. If he is their only signing it will have been a successful transfer window. If they add more, so much the better. It’s never too early to think ahead. The team has holes that need to be filled. Let’s fill them and win more cups.