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Before he left Chelsea for Monaco this month, Cesc Fabregas was Maurizio Sarri’s second option to Jorginho in the deep-lying position in Chelsea’s midfield.

With the Spaniard now at Monaco, Sarri had urged the club to sign a replacement so he would be able to rest Jorginho in some games.

Chelsea had been linked with a move for Cagliari’s Nicolo Barella but the Italian side are reluctant to sell the midfielder in the January transfer window. Chelsea were also linked with Leandro Paredes but the Argentina midfielder has instead joined Paris Saint-Germain.

Sarri has revealed he would play Mateo Kovacic as Chelsea’s deepest midfielder if the club fails to land a replacement for Fabregas this January.

Ethan Ampadu was played in the role in Chelsea’s FA Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday on Sunday but Sarri wasn’t impressed with the youngster’s performance in the role.

“For us I thought it was important to get two players. One has arrived, and I’m waiting for the other. If he arrives I will be very happy, otherwise I have to work with these players. It’s not a big problem. Of course I have to adapt players in that position,” Sarri said.

“[Ethan] Ampadu didn’t play very well in that position [on Sunday], but he is very young, it’s a new position, it’s not easy to play there in our team.

“In the second half we tried with Mateo [Kovacic]. Mateo is able to move the ball very fast, very cleanly, and now we have to see if he is able to play there in a defensive match.”

Gonzalo Higuain made his Chelsea debut in the FA Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday on Sunday and Sarri revealed the striker was surprised by the aggressiveness in the English game.

“It’s not easy to adapt to this championship. The Premier League is so difficult. At the end of the game [on Sunday], Higuain said it is so aggressive, but here it’s normal,” Sarri said.

“It’s not easy but he has the right experience, he’s a great player, and he has to run to adapt in a few matches. He has to do everything in less than one month, otherwise it’s late.”

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