Hakim Ziyech opens up on difficult start to life at Chelsea

Chelsea: Tuchel’s interesting response to top four race

Thomas Tuchel is in a condundrum with Hakim Ziyech, who has struggled since joining Chelsea from Ajax last summer for around £36m. The versatile midfielder has plenty to offer going forward, and could become an important creative spark for the Blues, but needs to find some form to get going.

Hakim Ziyech has opened up about his difficult start to life at Chelsea after a very slow first season.

Moroccan playmaker Ziyech arrived at Chelsea last summer from Ajax for around £36m.

But like his fellow new arrivals such as Timo Werner and Kai Havertz, the 27-year-old has failed to hit the ground running at Stamford Bridge.

Ziyech suffered a knee injury in pre-season meaning he did not get his first start until late October.

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He has made just eight Premier League starts since, but is confident he can still fulfil his potential in west London.

“It was a difficult first half year,” Ziyech told Ziggo Sport, as quoted by Voetbalzone.

“Of course I immediately started with an injury, came back, then had another injury. So things are not going the way I had hoped.

“But, as most know, I always have faith in myself. I know what I can do, so I don’t worry too much about that. The real Ziyech will be there.

“It is faster than at Ajax. Luckily I picked that up pretty quickly, until I got injured in the first exhibition game, which then throws you back all the way. And not even after that. That was a bummer. “

Ziyech has featured in just one of new manager Thomas Tuchel’s games so far, following the sacking of Frank Lampard.

The versatile midfielder is confident that he will get a proper chance to impress though, whether it is out wide or through the middle.

Ziyech added: “You know that can happen if the results are not good. It is also not the first time that it happens to me that the trainer is fired, so I know how to deal with that.

“We will have to wait and see what kind of system he (Tuchel) wants to play in. We have already played twice with three defenders and I was a second ten.

“But as you know: whether I play on the right or in the centre, that doesn’t really matter to me. As long as I play. That is the most important.”

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