The announcement of Thiago Silva signing is deemed to happen any moment from now. Several journalists had reported it as a ‘done’ deal. The cause for opting for a 36-year old centre-back is feasibly comprehensive. We need improvement in our defensive organisation. While there are four centre backs already at the club, where will Thiago Silva fit in?
Silva is a calm defender. He helps his team in possession and creates chances from deep through his excellent passing ability. Defensively, he is a strong figure with good aerial ability. Excellent at closing down opposing players in possession. His trademark expertise is tactical intelligence, attentive anticipation of play and outstanding positional sense.
To decide who will be his best partner at Chelsea, the tactical organisation of the manager must be put in place. Comprehensively, Frank Lampard’s defensive system adopts the ‘high defensive-line’ tactic. Which means centre-halves are asked to push closer to the centre line and protect the goal from there.
We can suggest that the top attribute needed here is Speed. Silva was a fast defender, but apparently shouldn’t be said of anymore for a 35-year-old. Hence any partner by his side must be fast enough to compensate for his ‘old-age’ shortcomings.
Another factor to care for is his height. Silva is 183cm which is short for a defender. His partner then must be the opposite of his physique. A player who is tall enough to take care of aerial battles.
Considering both factors, I can conclude Kurt Zouma and Antonio Rudiger are the most perfect pairing for him. They both have similar traits. They are quick enough to cover the space in behind. They are both 190cm by height while also being great headers of the ball – which means they’re good enough for aerial threats.
This format of centre half pairing had taken the league by storm in the past. Talk about John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho. The former is a strong leader, aggressive in tackles – a trait also in Silva. The latter is ridiculously quick to provide cover for his partner. This combo will be nothing but perfect.