Emerson proves he is serious challenger for Alonso’s position at Chelsea

Emerson Palmieri has spent the majority of his time at Chelsea so far in the shadows, with Marcos Alonso being first pick under manager Antonio Conte.

The Blues bought Emerson from Roma in January, but it took three months for the left-sided player to be given a Premier League start.

Due to Alonso’s three-match ban for stamping on Shane Long’s calf during last weekend’s victory over Southampton, Conte threw Emerson into the mix for Thursday night’s clash at Burnley.

Davide Zappacosta was overlooked, presumably because he will be called upon for Sunday’s FA Cup semi-final against the Saints.

However, Emerson made a case for the starting position during Chelsea’s 2-1 victory over the Clarets at Turf Moor.

Emerson Palmieri stats against Burnley

The 23-year-old looked comfortable in the wing-back role when both on the frontfoot and when tracking back to defend.

Emerson created the assist for Victor Moses’s winner in the 69th minute, but what stood out was his pace.

The Brazilian was capable of bursts forward, and due to his quick feet he managed to get back swiftly, allowing him to play higher up the pitch.

Alonso, who has heavily impressed Chelsea fans this season, has been steady in the left wing-back role, but he does not possess the speed that Emerson has.

With that in mind, plus the fact that the Spaniard has looked weary in the closing stages of the campaign, Emerson could get some more minutes on the pitch before the season comes to an end.