London Football News

Gullit says Sarri has made a big mistake by signing Higuain

Ruud Gullit does not believe Gonzalo Higuain is the striker Chelsea need.

Keen to resolve his side’s problems in front of goal, Blues boss Maurizio Sarri has been desperate to be reunited with Higuain, who previously played under him at Napoli.

The Argentine has duly been brought in on loan from Juventus and Sarri is confident he will deliver.

However, in a column for the BBC Sport website, former Chelsea player and manager Gullit suggested Sarri might have got it wrong.

He said: “I hope I am wrong, I really do, but Higuain is an old-fashioned striker who needs crosses and, if he plays up front all the time, he will not see many balls there because of the way Eden Hazard and Willian play.

“Those two always come inside, and dribble or shoot, and try to do things themselves.

“So they don’t need a player up there who is a target man, because Chelsea don’t use one and, under Sarri, they never do.

“Instead they need a centre-forward who can play in midfield too, and be effective on the ball as well as be a finisher inside the box. Roberto Firmino, who comes so deep for Liverpool, is the perfect example.

“That is how Chelsea’s front man has to play too, which is why I am not sure Higuain is the answer.

“At the very least, he has a difficult job because, with the way they are set-up, he will not be able to play the way he wants.”

Gullit also questioned Sarri’s recent public criticism of his players.

Sarri suggested his squad were difficult to motivate and he also criticised their attitude as well as insisting that Hazard does not have leadership qualities.

“It is very, very risky to criticise your players in public like Sarri did this week – even if you know you are right,” Gullit said.