The Case for Jorginho

We football fans are a simple bunch, we like what we know and know what we like. Normally the things we like are the flashiest on offer; Lionel Messi slinking his way seemingly round training cones disguised as players, or Cristiano Ronaldo leaping higher than any human should, to power a header through the net. We are but crows, our interest is most captured by the sight of shiny objects. It’s no surprise then, that in the world of football, the players least likely to get the most love are the ones that are not flashy. The ones that don’t run the fastest, or have the most skill, or score goals that leave people lost for words.

It is, therefore, a small wonder that Chelsea and Italy midfielder Jorge Luiz Frello Filho, or Jorginho as we know him, is such a contested talent. He simply doesn’t do anything on the pitch that warms the casual football fan’s heart. If you only really catch the highlights of matches on YouTube or absent-mindedly watch a game and only get excited when the ball gets near either goal, it’s going to seem like Jorginho doesn’t do, well, much at all. He doesn’t run fast, he doesn’t have the most skill, and the only goals he scores are bunny-hopping penalties that, in a lot of people’s eyes, Bruno Fernandes executes better anyway.

Master of Possession

So what does he do? Well, help control the tempo of the entire game for one. Think of Jorginho as the metronome of his team. By using his exquisite short passing skills, and then his ability to always make himself available to receive the ball in tight areas in the middle of the pitch, he constantly keeps the team ticking over and allows the recycling of the ball around the midfield and backline, which gives the team security in possession. It’s no wonder then that managers who employ possession-based tactics absolutely adore Jorginho.

Maurizio Sarri was the man that brought Jorginho to Stamford Bridge, back in 2018, when he became the manager at Chelsea. Sarri had come to England from Napoli, where he had had Jorginho previously and it was apparently the first transfer he demanded above all others when he arrived in London. It wasn’t only Sarri that wanted Jorginho back then though, as Pep Guardiola also reportedly wanted to capture him for Manchester City and have him pulling the strings at the Etihad. In fact, Guardiola thought Jorginho was definitely coming to City, as was reported at https://www.skysports.com/. Sarri however, managed to convince the higher-ups at Chelsea the importance of the transfer and Jorginho was secured for a staggering £50 million. When managers like Guardiola and Sarri are having a tug of war over him, it shows how highly rated he is by true professors of the game.

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PHOTO, CAPTION: He helps his team get closer to the goal

Breaking Down Defences

It’s not just sideways passing that Jorginho excels at though, as he also has the awareness required to be able to break lines from his deep vantage point. He will always take his first touch and look up and around the pitch and have the desire to play the ball forwards if possible. This is where he has truly progressed under Thomas Tuchel’s tutorage since the German was hired by Chelsea back in January. Jorginho was a big part of Chelsea’s run to Champions League glory last season and was instrumental in their games against Real Madrid, where his slick forward passing helped them break through Madrid time and time again.

Jorginho has also been central to Italy’s phoenix-like revival to once again be one of the world’s most feared international teams, as we reported here at https://www.elartedf.com/. It’s clear that the Italians under Roberto Mancini have got a fresh outlook that, just like Tuchel’s Chelsea, gets the most out of Jorginho and makes him such an important role in a dominating team. This was highlighted by Italy’s demolishing of Turkey in their opening game at Euro 2020, and why bookies now have them priced at 10/1 to win the tournament.

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