Chelsea will be busy next summer as they chase cover for first team options, a world-class striker to bring some level of assurance in the attacking third, keep Eden Hazard out of the grasps of Real Madrid and make sure Mateo Kovacic does not fully pack out of London.
The Croatia international has not looked a threat in front of goal like Ross Barkley and Ruben Loftus-Cheek have in recent weeks but his calmness and assurance in fulfilling Mauzirio Sarri’s tactical demands makes him a sure bet to be a topic in negotiations when the Blues top hierarchy meets Real Madrid’s next summer.
Barkley and Loftus-Cheek failed to restore Chelsea’s dominance in midfield when BATE Borisov threw bodies forward and did not allow the Premier League giants to dictate the tempo of the game. The Englishmen looks lost for the most part of the 1-0 win in Belarus.
But Kovacic’s entry ensured Chelsea returned to being the superior side. He has always been more tactically astute than his other two midfield rivals and provides more defensive cover.
It is not strange that Sarri trusts him in the big games over Barkley and Loftus-Cheek with starts against Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal.