Why Pochettino is preferring Ben Chilwell on the left wing

Chelsea fans are largely pretty happy with Mauricio Pochettino, and have been since he arrived.

If there’s one thing that has some of them scratching their heads though, it’s his use of Ben Chilwell. Since the start of the season, the left back has effectively been used as a left winger, with Levi Colwill playing as a narrow left back.

This basically puts another defender on the field, given Chilwell could play in Colwill’s position. Given our struggles to score goals, missing the chance to get another attacker on the pitch – especially against teams like Nottingham Forest – seems crazy.

The Athletic‘s summary of Chelsea’s squad composition for this season explains the decision in concise terms – it’s not just Mykhailo Mudryk being desperately poor, it’s also what the experienced Chilwell can offer:

“Chilwell has been preferred on the left wing because he can be trusted to make the right movements at the right times, with and without the ball.”

That is certainly true, and his positioning is what makes him so effective as a goalscorer. Of course it’s still a temporary fix – what we really want is a player on the left wing who does those things as well as Ben Chilwell doing them at left back.

That may take some time and some coaching – let’s hope it doesn’t take anymore signing.