Hakim Ziyech admits struggle to adapt to Thomas Tuchel's Chelsea system

Tom Gott
Ziyech admits to struggling at Chelsea
Ziyech admits to struggling at Chelsea / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Hakim Ziyech has confessed that he struggled to get to grips with Thomas Tuchel's formation at Chelsea.

Brought in by former boss Frank Lampard for his abilities as a right winger, Ziyech has had to find a place in Tuchel's 3-4-2-1 setup, which does not usually include wide players and instead favours central attacking midfielders.

His plight was evident last season as Ziyech struggled to force his way into the team, but the Moroccan has been in excellent form as of late and appears to have finally found his place.

"[The system] affects me, of course," Ziyech admitted to Chelsea TV. "Everybody knows that, if I play wide, it's my best position. When we play four at the back, most of the time I play on the right [wing].

"When we play a back five, we play a different system. I think during the time since [Tuchel] came, I've adapted well."

He continued: "I think I had more problems that most of the players because I'd never played with a back five. I needed some time and I took that time to adapt, to learn from it and to improve.

"I think in that role, things are much better now than in the beginning."

While Chelsea had been struggling in front of goal earlier in 2022, Ziyech has managed to step his game up. He has three goals in his last four Premier League appearances, as well as a goal and two assists in his last three Champions League starts.

His good form has threatened to be curtailed by an Achilles injury, but Ziyech insisted he is ready to keep the good times coming.

"It's crazy. Every time you're doing well, you get an injury or something bad happens and you have to start over again," he said.

"Right now, I'm in a good way. Of course, I just came back from an injury. I had a good period behind me and I'll try to do that again."