Chelsea will start their defence of the Premier League title with an opening fixture against Burnley at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
It’s a game Chelsea are expected to win, and it’s one they’d have to win without key player, Victor Moses.
The Nigeria international was key for Antonio Conte last season as he made the right wing-back spot his own as Chelsea went on to win the league convincingly with Conte’s 3-4-3 system.
However, Conte is keen on providing competition for Victor Moses and Marcos Alonso, as the two wing-backs can’t go through another hectic season as our only recognised wing-backs all season.
For Moses, he’d miss the season’s opener against Burnley, due to the red card he was issued against Arsenal in the FA Cup final back in May.
Who would/should stand in for the 26-year-old?
As thin as Conte’s choices may be, the Italian has a number of options.
The Spaniard is Conte’s first choice to replace Moses in the right wing-back position. An accomplished full-back in his own right, Azpilicueta can fit in anywhere and would definitely be Conte’s main candidate for that position, with new signing Antonio Rudiger replacing him on the right side of defence.
Although a centre-back, Rudiger has the pace to play as a wing-back and could slot in temporarily in the right wing-back role till Moses serves his suspension. He has the pace, energy and composure to play the position.
The Chelsea academy product slotted in at right wing-back position during pre-season and fitted in effortlessly. Although the centre-back role is his natural position, the 19-year-old showed enough class in that position against Arsenal in pre-season and almost capped his performance with a goal.
Pedro is another name that Conte could play there, but the Blues are already short of wingers and he would definitely start from the wing against Sean Dyche’s men.