Matt Law has backed Ross Barkley ahead of Mateo Kovacic to start for Chelsea in midfield.

“I thought he was excellent,” he told Sky Sports’ Sunday Supplement. “A lot has been made of Jorginho and his role but, when it is [N’Golo] Kante, Jorginho and [Mateo] Kovacic, it’s a very stuffy midfield three. There’s not a lot of creativity there.”

“Jorginho goes sideways, Kante’s actually getting used to his role very well but Kovacic is another up and downer. He doesn’t score or assist, and I just think with Barkley in there they’ve a got a little bit more attacking impetus.”

“They’ve got a little bit more magic in there and I thought he ran the midfield. They should stick with him for a while now.”

Barkley was signed by Chelsea in the winter transfer window last year but spent the last few months of Conte’s tenure on the operating table recovering from an old injury. He started the season brightly under Sarri but faded off in the middle part.

Chelsea fans will be happy to see their local boy back in action and playing well for the Blues.

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