Mateo Kovacic has certainly struggled at times during his season-long loan from Real Madrid this season, with many questioning his lack of goals and assists from midfield.
The Croatia international has featured 48 times in all competitions for Chelsea throughout the campaign, but has failed to score a single goal and has just two assists to his name.
The Blues, however, are rumoured to be considering signing the midfielder on a permanent deal this summer, after it was confirmed last week that Chelsea would be able to purchase the Croatian despite their impeding transfer ban.
And amidst reports that Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain are lining up a bid for N’Golo Kante this summer, signing Kovacic could be an important piece of business.
Following what has been a relatively inconsistent season from Kovacic, we’ve taken a look at the pros and cons of signing the midfielder on a permanent basis this summer.
Pro - Chelsea can sign him
It sounds a silly and obvious point to make, but he is potentially the only midfielder Chelsea can sign this summer given the impeding transfer ban. Despite his lack of goals and assists, he could still prove a useful player for the Blues, especially if PSG step up their interest in Kante.
Con - Attacking contribution
A point that has already been made, but a return of no goals and just two assists from 48 appearances for a player of his quality just is not good enough.
Pro - Ability on the ball
Despite frustrating many a Chelsea fan with his performances this season, myself included, one thing that is clear is his ability on the ball. The Croatian has shown glimpses of his skill with the ball at his feet, and has a useful short burst of pace in his locker.
Con - Lingers on the ball
A strange point to make after praising his ability on the ball, but Kovacic has a tendency to linger on the ball in midfield for too long. Yes he is good on the ball, but he needs to release it to a teammate quicker.
Pro - Midfield versatility
Kovacic does have the ability to play in all three midfield roles in Maurizio Sarri’s system, and some of his better displays have come when he’s been used in the deeper, more central position.
Con - He could prevent opportunities for younger players
The likes of Mason Mount and the versatile Reece James have been tipped to break into Chelsea’s senior squad next season, following impressive loan spells, and both could have opportunities to impress in midfield. However, signing Kovacic could hinder their chances of playing regularly for the Blues.