BABA RAHMAN: who is he and what will he do for the Blues?
So Baba Rahman has been on the radar for awhile now, ever since his international...
So Baba Rahman has been on the radar for awhile now, ever since his international debut in 2014 and his strong performance in every minute of the Africa Cup of Nations this year with Ghana. This month he's been signed by Chelsea despite being scouted by both Man Utd and Arsenal. The price is still said to be under negotiation but rumour has it that it won't be much short of £20m. So who is this guy and what's he going to do for the Blues?
He's only 21 but has already played for SpVgg Greuther Fürth and FC Augsburg. With two seasons in the Bundesliga under his belt where he made the most tackles of all the left-backs, he's already proved that he can play at the top level. He played a big role in the success of Augsburg, his former club, who took fifth place in the German championship and played in a total of 32 games last year. In fact, as a left-back he ranked as the best in the Bundesliga shortly behind David Alaba of Bayern Munich and Wolfsburg's Ricardo Rodriguez.
The young Ghanian has been drafted in to act as substitute for Cesar Azpilicueta, making him a direct challenge to the Spaniard who took the position from Ashley Cole two years ago. It's certain that Baba will be looking to make his way into the starting XI, and the only way to do that is through Azpilicueta. He's done pretty well for Chelsea so far, scoring one of their three winning goals against West Brom, in what has been their only Premier League victory this season. But the truth is, Baba's got a lot of potential. He stacks up well beside his rival with four assists, 24 chances created over 31 games and a pass accuracy at over 70%.
In terms of what this could mean for the Blues this season, we can only hope that it might turn things around and give us all enough confidence to actuallly put money where our mouths are and back Chelsea for the title, in which case sites like Betminded can be pretty useful. But, in any case, the likelihood is that we won't see Baba get a lot of action straight away, what with his own match fitness to work on and Mourinho's reluctance to change the team line up.
The new left-back may have to wait in the wings for a substitution or injury before he clocks up any game time, although Chelsea have six matches to play in September so Baba could have to step up while Azpilicueta rests. When Baba does make an appearance for the Blues, we're expecting aggressive front foot play from him.