Andre Schurrle arrived at Stamford Bridge with an air of caution in the summer. Although he starred for Bayer Levekusen last year Chelsea were already packed full of attacking midfielders and wide men, and were also expecting Kevin de Bruyne back from Werder Bremen, so where he would fit in was a mystery to most. Fast forward 11 Premier League games and he has made nine appearances, but completed just one game. If Jose Mourinho is serious about challenging for the Premier League, then I’d suggest that he needs to get the best out of the Germany international.
The way Mourinho sets up his side is simple. He sticks two central midfield players in the pivot and has a front four almost in the shape of a diamond. Chelsea knock the ball around nicely and are in no rush to burst forward, that is until they smell the chance of a break.
Then they spring forward with what is often a rapid, meaningful attack on the opposition and there are few better at that than Schurrle. He is primarily a winger and his pace holds great measure within the side. But what sets him apart from a lot of others, for me, is that he has the composure in the dangerous areas to match his speed.
He knows when to dart into the box and he knows when to drill the ball into a team-mate. He knows when to stand a ball up to the back post and he knows when to try and beat a man. His decision making is superb and Chelsea have only had a little taste of that so far.
He has made 14 key passes, completed 88% of his passes and scored once in the Premier League, but when used properly for the German national side he has scored a whole load more – including a hat-trick against Sweden recently.
To get the best out of Fernando Torres, also, you need pace either side of him, which Schurrle can provide in abundance.
The 23-year-old holds the key to Mourinho’s desire to counter attack, and I think if the Portugese boss wants to get his hands on the trophy come May then it’s important he gets the best out of Schurrle.