Enzo Maresca could axe key Chelsea player amid interest in Euro 2024 star

Ben Chilwell endured a difficult season for Chelsea (Photo: Getty)

Ben Chilwell faces an ‘uncertain future’ at Chelsea under Enzo Maresca and could be sold this summer, according to reports.

The left-back moved to Stamford Bridge from Leicester City in 2020 in a deal worth £45million and has been an important player for the Blues ever since.

To date, he has has made 106 appearances for the club, helping them win the Champions League in 2021 as well as reach the finals of the FA Cup and League Cup.

He has also been a regular for England and was part of the squad that reached the Euro 2020 final.

However, the Telegraph report that Chilwell’s place at Chelsea is under threat after a difficult campaign and due to the demands of his new manager.

The 27-year-old was named vice-captain at the start of last season but despite the prolonged absence of skipper Reece James, he would barely wear the armband having been decimated by injuries himself.

He made just 21 appearances across all competitions, only 13 of them starts, and struggled for form when he did play, which resulted in Gareth Southgate surprisingly snubbing him from his Euro 2024 squad.

Chelsea are targeting Riccardo Calafiori (Photo: Getty)

But the report adds that Maresca’s style of play may not align with what Chilwell can produce, with the former Leicester boss preferring ‘Swiss Army Knife’ players who can operate in various positions.

Chilwell has only ever played as a left-back or left-wingback and moreover Maresca prefers his full-backs to invert into midfield, something the Three Lions star doesn’t do as well as teammate Marc Cucurella.

It is perhaps for this reason that Chelsea want to sign a new left-footed defender with Euro 2020 star Riccardo Calafiori emerging as a top target.

The Italy international is also wanted by Arsenal and is ‘open’ to joining the Gunners after they launched a £40m bid for the 22-year-old.

If the Blues do get their man it could spell the end of Chilwell, who still has three years left to run on his contract, though it is not known if there are any interested buyers.

Chelsea have already sold off two left-backs this summer, with Lewis Hall joining Newcastle permanently after his loan there last season, while the highly-rated Ian Maatsen has signed for Aston Villa.

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