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While Chelsea are yet to find a defender like John Terry, we might even say that a player of his calibre comes probably once every generation. The Blues are also yet to get a player like Gary Cahill.
Cahill was not a John Terry, but he was a stunning defender in his own right. The former Chelsea and England skipper didn’t make a move from a big club, his transfer wasn’t really rated, neither did the media say much about it, after all he just joined for a meagre fee from Bolton. But the man himself would play a key role for the Blues to win the Champions League that same season.
Cahill wasn’t the fastest of defenders, but he had one attribute every top defender should have, he could defend. Oh surely, he was a world-class defender.
Cahill brought solidity to the Blues backline, and he was a leader. He learnt well under the guidance of John Terry, and when the Chelsea legend left the club, Cahill took over the captain’s band without fuss, and he conducted the Chelsea defence with mastery. Currently, a leader is what we lack in our centre-back position.
Blessed with good and even young defenders in Kurt Zouma, Fikayo Tomori, Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger (all good defenders in their own right), Chelsea just need one quality, experienced and vocal leader as a centre-half, to bring the best out of our defenders.
Lewis Dunk might just be that man. He wouldn’t be a high profile signing, compared to Liverpool’s signing of Virgil van Dijk or Manchester United’s £80m move for Harry Maguire, but he’d surely deliver.
Just four seasons ago, Dunk was playing Championship football, but he spent the last three years in the Premier League and has shown that he belongs at the top. One outstanding thing about him is that he never gets injured. From his Championship days, he has been regularly involved in almost every single league game for his side, and only missed a handful of matches.
Last season, Dunk had a tackle success of 60%. He won 99 aerial battles, losing just 52 and also won 161 duels. He made 250 recoveries with no own goal and no error leading to a goal all season.
Offensively, he got three goals and three assists, and gave 62.53 passes per match. He also gave a stunning 164 accurate long balls, which Timo Werner would definitely be longing for.
For a defender, whose side finished in 15th place, these are not ordinary stats.