Callum Hudson-Odoi is a player that derives significant attention from important teams. A product of Chelsea’s academy, the forward has been questioning his role in the team. Bayern Munich has replied to his predicament offering Hudson-Odoi the chance to play in the Bundesliga. Why are two of Europe’s most important clubs showing such interest? Today we analyze his recent stats and look at his strengths and weaknesses.
Few 18-year-olds show the maturity displayed by Hudson-Odoi
Even though the Englishman has made few starts for Chelsea’s senior team, he has usually made his chances count. This season Hudson-Odoi has netted in both the Europa League and the FA Cup. His few appearances in the Premier League have shown him capable of leading Chelsea’s ailing attacking line. Simply put, scouts believe that there are few players of Hudson-Odoi’s age and potential on the market.
This has lead to Bayern showing a willingness to spend in excess of £35m to secure his services. Chelsea, on the other hand, is not budging. The Stanford Bridge club has blocked the transfer and offer Callum Hudson-Odoi an extension on his contract.
Ability to play multiple roles
The modern football game prioritizes versatility. Hudson-Odoi has shown to be able to play both as a winger, equally comfortable on the left and right flanks, as well as a classic striker. This, coupled with his innate skill, can grant him more opportunities of finding a place in Chelsea or Bayern’s starting line-up. His age also means that the player may still be groomed and specialized for a role that will benefit his side.
The winger’s great pace on and off the ball
One of Hudson-Odoi‘s greatest abilities is that of playing behind defenders, and use his pace and athleticism to reach passes. The player usually likes to cut in from the sides. Hudson-Odoi has shown that he can handle his own in duels with experienced central defenders. Hector Bellerin learned this in Chelsea’s defeat to Arsenal.
Because of his pace and tactical awareness, Hudson-Odoi can prove extremely beneficial not only in creating scoring chances for himself. The player can prove a great supplier of killer passes to Eden Hazard or Gonzalo Higuain at Chelsea. If Bayern’s offer is accepted, he could do the same for Robert Lewandowski in Munich. The Englishman has scored twice and provided one assist this season, yet we feel he is capable of more.
Can protect the ball and create space
Hudson-Odoi is a rare example of a young player already comfortable in 1v1 duels against more experienced players. When on the ball, the winger uses his pace and vision, to destabilize defenders. He then creates space for a forward pass to his teammate, before lunging himself in attack for a one-two pass. Given Bayern’s history with players, this is likely to be one of the traits the Germans’ scouts have singled out.
‘We want him to stay, we were singing as well!’
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) January 28, 2019
Passing and vision on the ball
The winger’s record in terms of passing is indeed a brief one but should make Maurizio Sarri take notice of the player. Callum Hudson-Odoi has a 90% success rate in his Europa League matches. His Premier League performances don’t stray far either.
What is more interesting is what he can do when he does pass the ball. Hudson-Odoi is able to move and pass in tight areas. His intelligence makes him seek out difficult and useful passes that can out his teammates in a dangerous position. Often, he will try to move closer to the nearest defender before making the pass. His pace and vision mean that by doing this he can easily take out a defender before making a run or setting up a teammate. Hudson-Odoi averaged 3.5 dribbles per game in the Europa League this season.
Does Hudson-Odoi have any important weaknesses?
It is difficult to identify any glaring deficiencies in the player’s abilities. Hudson-Odoi is gearing up to be a well-rounded player capable to play on a large stage. Maurizio Sarri has hinted towards a few areas in which he may still improve. Those areas include physical fitness, tactical awareness and the ability to take on extra defensive responsibilities.
The player must also earn experience. But, this is, of course, something that can only be obtained by playing often and being offered continuous new challenges. Many would argue that at 18-years-old Callum Hudson-Odoi displays maturity beyond his years.
We are to see how the Callum Hudson-Odoi saga plays out. Bayern has made it publicly clear that they wish to transfer to the talented winger. It’s certainly a gesture of intent. On the other hand, Chelsea looks unwilling to sell. Recent reports that the club could risk a transfer ban in the future may also affect the player’s role in the organization.
Until then, Hudson-Odoi remains a free option in FootballCoin. He can be used both in Europa League and Premier League contests. Don’t forget to foin FootballCoin for a free fantasy football game that rewards its very best with cryptocurrency prizes.
News Update January 29th
Chelsea manager Mauricio Sarri denies plans to allow Callum Hudson-Odoi leave the club either in the winter or the summer break. Sarri says that Hudson-Odoi’s transfer request has been rejected. The manager also commented, that despite interest from Bayern Munchen, the player must learn to respect the club and its youth academy. “He has time. This is his home – we will be patient,” the manager says.
News update January 30th
Chelsea succumbs to a shocking 4-0 away loss to Bournemouth. In spite of initial reports, Callum Hudson-Odoi is not included among the first team. The winger is also denied the chance to enter the game as a substitute. In light of the result, fans question Maurizio Sarri’s decision. “We have four wingers, one had to be in the stands,” is the manager’s explanation.
News update February 1st
The transfer deadline in England has passed and Callum Hudson-Odoi continues to be registered with Chelsea. Despite Bayern Munchen’s best efforts, the Blues could not be persuaded. Criticism has followed the decision, with some comparing his situation to that of Jordan Sancho who plays for Dortmund. Sancho’s move to the Bundesliga had a positive effect on both player and club. Some claim that the decision to refuse Hudson-Odoi’s transfer request may hinder his development.
News update February 3rd
In spite of the controversy related to Hudson-Odoi’s transfer request, the player continues to be offered few chances to play. The winger played merely 13 minutes during the Premier League fixture against Bournemouth. Chelsea won by a comfortable 5-0 scoreline. Yet, Callum Hudson-Odoi failed to make much of an impact, unable to truly get into the rhythm of the game. It remains to be seen if future matches will provide more opportunities.