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Chelsea: Matty Cash is the perfect Azpilicueta heir

Chelsea are eyeing an unlikely swoop for Aston Villa right-back Matty Cash, who has dazzled for club and country across recent times…

According to prominent Chelsea blogger and podcast host Simon Phillips, Cash has been earmarked as a potential option for the club to ail the woes that the outfit are currently beset with, with manager Graham Potter indeed holding a vested interest in the Poland international’s signature.

Despite the imperious Reece James’ emergence over the past several years, he has been stricken by injury this season and has thus far missed 16 competitive fixtures, and the veteran stalwart Cesar Azpilicueta is 33 years old and approaching the twilight phase of his illustrious career.

Cash would be an exemplary competitor for James’ established position down the right flank, providing Chelsea with two top-class options to promote healthy rotation, consequently bolstering the club in the pursuit of major honours.

Azpi heir

Chelsea are undergoing a systematic rebuild following the sale of the club from former owner Roman Abramovich last year, preceding the dismissal of Thomas Tuchel at the beginning of the current campaign.

New owner Todd Boehly’s current expenditure stands at a towering fee in the region of £315m – not including the agreed £52.4m fee for RB Leipzig maestro Christopher Nkunku – despite not yet seeing a full year in his role at the peak of the hierarchy, but there certainly seems to be no sight of slowing down as the Blues look to usher in a successful start to the new era.

And with Azpilicueta now indeed approaching the conclusion of his extensive stay in west London following his arrival from Marseille in 2012 for an initial £6.5m, Villa’s Cash could indeed be the money move to instigate future success.

Would Matty Cash be a good signing for Chelsea?

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The 25-year-old Cash, making 85 appearances for the Villa since his £14m switch from Nottingham Forest, has been a regular presence for the Premier League outfit, flourishing in his role and recording four goals and six assists.

As per FBref, the 12-cap Cash ranks within the top 17% of full-backs in Europe’s top five leagues for rate of goals over the past year, while also making 2.29 tackles and 2.42 clearances per outing.

His exploits even earned him a call-up for Poland’s international squad for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, where he started all four fixtures, as per Sofascore, as his side clinched qualification from their group phase and lost a competitive encounter to France in the round-of-16.

The £26.5m-rated defender’s robust and industrious approach to the full-back role were imperative in his country’s efforts, creating 0.5 key passes per match, completing 80% of his passes and making 1.0 tackles and 3.8 clearances each occasion.

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With Chelsea indeed in search of a fresh face to rival James for the position at the right heel of the team, the “exceptional” Cash – in the words of Alex McLeish – might just be the man; he is refined, physical, and boasts a wealth of experience both on English soil and internationally, capable of providing the extra dimension Potter needs.