Emerson Palmieri Is Turning Out To Be Chelsea’s Diamond In The Rough

  Emerson Palmieri looks to have installed himself as Frank Lampard’s first-choice left-back this season after endurin...

Emerson Palmieri looks to have installed himself as Frank Lampard’s first-choice left-back this season after enduring a difficult start to life at Chelsea.

Having joined the Stamford Bridge side in January 2018 under Antonio Conte following a return from a long-term knee injury, the defender languished on the bench as Spaniard Marcos Alonso continued to be Conte’s preferred option as a left wing-back in his three-at-the-back formation.

Alonso, an immense attacker for someone listed as a defensive player, has often been criticised for his inability to consistently live up to what’s supposed to be his main job requirement. It was thought that Maurizio Sarri’s arrival last summer would see the Brazil-born Italy international oust him when the team went back to playing four defenders, but Alonso managed to convince the manager he was the best man for the role.

Emerson didn’t really find opportunities until the end of last season and ended the campaign with just seven starts in the Premier League.

Lampard, however, has played the former AS Roma man at every opportunity, starting him in all three of the Blues’ league outings, as well as the Uefa Super Cup match against Liverpool.

Despite fans calling for the Italian to replace Alonso, there were worries after the club let both Ola Aina and Jay Dasilva leave on permanent deals during the summer. The pair were two of the best defensive prospects to come from the Blues’ academy and, given that the team can’t register any new players until next summer, the concerns weren’t out of place.

Emerson’s performances seem to have put all of those qualms to rest, though. The left-back has been one of the more consistent Chelsea players so far this season and what’s impressed most is the balance as it relates to both defense and attack. The defender is quite threatening going forward and has come close to scoring a few times this term, but he does a great job on the other end of the pitch as well.

The 25-year-old is the Chelsea player who has made the most passes in the league so far and is a vital part of the offence. His displays have left Alonso rooted to the bench but there’s a lot more football to be played till the end of the campaign and he should get his opportunities.

Chelsea won their first match under Lampard last Saturday, beating Norwich 3-2 away from home through goals from Tammy Abraham (2) and Mason Mount. After starting the season with a 4-0 loss to Manchester United, performances have improved and the manager will hope he can build on the win with more of the same.

The Blues are unlikely to be in the race for the league title but you could find odds of 50/1 from Bet365 on their chances and you could click here to find a list of the top free bet no deposit offers to make your bet. Manchester City are still favorites after two consecutive titles and Ladbrokes are offering 4/9 odds on Pep Guardiola’s men completing the threepeat while Liverpool are at 12/5 William Hill.

Lampard’s Blues are 2/1 to finish the current campaign in the top four with Bet365 and Betfair has their chances of claiming a top-six finish at 2/5. Chelsea sit outside of the top 10 in the league’s 13th spot (at the time of writing), one of 10 teams with four points, and are 1/20 to finish on or above 10th place with Skybet. They’re 17/2 to finish in the bottom half of the table with Paddy Power, however.

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