According to David Ornstein of The Athletic, Chelsea have reached an agreement with Monaco to sign Axel Disasi. The 25-year-old Frenchman will join the Blues family this summer transfer window.
Of course, the West London club had no intention of buying any centre-backs this summer. They have many brilliant and talented players at the back.
However, Wesley Fofana’s knee injury changed the scene. As a result, they have to sign a new CB, having signed Axel from Monaco to balance the defense line.
The Frenchman centre-back comes at the right time. Because Trevoh Chalobah was also subbed off against Fulham on Sunday in the PL Summer Series.
Therefore, it’s most likely that the Englishman is injured. Amazingly, Axel Disasi has the ability to cover for both Trevoh Chalobah and Wesley Fofana in the squad.
Chelsea will sign the 25-year-old Frenchman for a fee of €45 million. And he’s expected to sign a 5-year contract with an option for an extra year.
Disasi looks like the final piece to complete the Blues defense line. Of course, Mauricio Pochettino’s troops are most likely to win all competitions this season.
Manchester United were heavily linked to Axel. However, the Red Devils didn’t make any offer to get his signature, since they had enough at the back.
Also, Arsenal and Mikel Arteta showed their firm interest in the Frenchman. But the Gunners are reluctant to pay Monaco’s asking price for the centre-back.
Surprisingly, the 25-year-old French defender will arrive at Stamford Bridge. And he will work under Mauricio Pochettino during this campaign in the 2023-2024.
Laurence Stewart recommended Disasi. He’s reportedly been a big fan of the player, since his days at Monaco. As a result, the West London club believes he’s a good addition to the squad.
Unbelievably, Axel Disasi will be joining his former teammate, Benoit Badiashile, at Chelsea. They are both starters for Monaco in Ligue 1, controlling the defense line.
French players at Chelsea
- Christopher Nkunku
- Malo Gusto
- Wesley Fofana
- Benoit Badiashile
- Lesley Ugochukwu
- Axel Disasi
Of course, the Blues are seriously exploring the Ligue 1 market. They keep signing French players, building and preparing for their future, particularly in the Premier League.
It was easy for Monaco to sell Axel Disasi to Chelsea. Because they have agreed to sign Mohammed Salisu from Southampton, replacing the Frenchman at the back.
In all fairness, the 25-year-old Frenchman is a massive addition to the Blues squad. He’s a leader, and captaincy material, captained Monaco last season.
Also, his combination with Benoit Badiashile and Levi Colwill will help the team’s performance. He has the ability to establish himself in the Premier League, and make waves.
Axel Disasi stats in Ligue 1
38 games (37 starts)
0.2 key passes
84% pass accuracy
0.4 dribbled past
72% dribble success
47% ground duels won
70% aerial duels won
59% total duels won
Apparently, it looks like the Frenchman is the final piece to balance the Blues defense line. He’s indeed a reliable and dependable centre-back.
However, the West London club would still have to sign a midfielder. They have to provide an ideal partner for Enzo Fernández, if they want to go far this season.
According to WhoScored, Axel won the second most aerial duels (97) in Ligue 1 last season. He will definitely do better in the Premier League.
Disasi’s stats vs Ligue 1 centre-backs in 2022-2023
340 final third entries (1st)
236 ball recoveries (5th)
97 aerial duels (2nd)
51 touches in opp box (1st)
2.82 set-play expected goals (2nd)
Frankly, with Levi Colwill, Chelsea would break many defense lines this season. They have players who use passing as their dangerous weapon.
Mauricio Pochettino likes his centre-backs to make line-breaking passes. As a result, he’s going to enjoy the Frenchman in all competitions.
With Wesley Fofana injured, Trevoh Chalobah possibly injured, and Thiago Silva unable to play back-to-back games. Axel has the opportunity to break into the starting XI.
What are Axel Disasi strengths and weaknesses?
Despite being just 25-year-old, the Frenchman is experienced. Of course, he has played many games for Monaco in all competitions, apart from Ligue 1.
Therefore, he obviously ticks all the boxes as a standard centre-back. And he will definitely establish himself at Chelsea, and in the Premier League.
Speaking of his strength, Axel is unbeatable in the air. He has aerial dueling as one of his biggest strengths, very dominant when contesting for the ball in the air.
The Frenchman won 97 aerial duels in Ligue 1 last campaign. As a result, it’s very certain for him when it comes to battling aerially. He has elite qualities in the air.
Athleticism and tenacity is another thing to consider. The 25-year-old French defender is very strong on the ball, he doesn’t lose ball possession easily.
His physicality usually gives him an advantage over the opponent. Both defensively and offensively, it’s difficult to get him off the ball on the pitch.
As a centre-back, dribbling is one of Axel strongest skills. He’s the kind of defender, who believes so much in his dribbling prowess, progressing the ball forward.
The 25-year-old Frenchman has the ability to get into space, moving forward to setup the team’s attack. He’s a CB with an effective attacking output on the pitch.
Disasi is a flawless tackler, he makes tackles for fun without committing any unnecessary fouls. The French international is very comfortable on the ball.
Frankly, he averaged 0.8 tackles per 90 minutes for Monaco last season. Regardless, he’s an accurate tackler, who goes for the ball and wins it back for his teammates.
Axel’s timing and positioning are also considerable. He’s fond of reading the opposition’s movement, making it easy for him to win the ball back.
The 25-year-old French international is an impressive ball carrier. At least, he relies on his ball-playing ability to destroy the opponent’s players offensively.
Also, versatility; Disasi can comfortably play several roles at the defense line. His versatility gives him an edge over his teammates, making himself irreplaceable in the squad.
The Frenchman’s defensive awareness is impressive. He’s very strong at winning aerial and ground duels, shutting down the opponent inside their box.
The 25-year-old French defender has some shortcomings. Of course, he’s most likely to improve under Mauricio Pochettino at Chelsea.
Axel is poor at 1v1 defending, he doesn’t have the ability to handle 1v1 dribblers. And that may make him suffer seriously in the Premier League.
Having had 0.4 dribbled past in Ligue 1 last season. He usually makes himself available to engage early against 1v1 dribblers.
His 1v1 defending is very bad, however, there’s always a room for improvement. He can get better under the Argentine gaffer in England.
Despite the fact that Disasi is a ball-playing centre-back. He’s not a good passer, having had 84% pass accuracy for Monaco in the league last campaign.
Meanwhile, he does make brilliant line-breaking passes. However, the player isn’t really good in making short and diagonal passes, having watched him.
Nevertheless, he can actually learn from Thiago Silva and Levi Colwill. Fortunately, he has the capacity to adapt to the toxicity in the Premier League.
Also, Axel Disasi should work on his pace and acceleration. He’s not really quick on the ball, his speed as a centre-back isn’t that impressive.
What is Disasi’s position?
The 25-year-old Frenchman is signed to replace injured Wesley Fofana. As a result, he plays as a centre-back, a brilliant ball-playing CB who can cover many grounds.
At the same time, he can play as a right-back. His versatility enticed Erik ten Hag at Manchester United, who wanted to get his signature this summer transfer window.
Also, he can play left-centre-back and right-centre-back. Speaking of the 3-at-the-back formation, he can play the CCB position, standing at the centre.
Therefore, he’s capable of replacing Wesley Fofana and Trevoh Chalobah as right-centre-backs. Also, Malo Gusto and Reece James as right-backs.
His versatility will definitely help Mauricio Pochettino’s selection at the back. Because he can comfortably play multiple positions at the back, making headlines.
Since Wesley Fofana looks injury-prone. Disasi will play many games for the West London club this season, particularly in the Premier League.
What is Axel Disasi style of play?
The 25-year-old Frenchman is a ball-playing and dominant centre-back. He’s Virgil van Dijk’s type of player, a balanced and composed CB.
Axel is an aggressive defender, who likes to get forward when he plays as a right-back. Of course, he can comfortably play at both positions, without making errors.
As a ball-playing centre-back, the French international likes to play in the opponent’s half. His ball-carrying ability allows him to move the ball forward.
Moreso, the Frenchman likes to shoot. He can shoot from a distance, making himself available near the opposition’s territory on the pitch.
Disasi likes to jump, fighting for the ball in the air. His physicality and athleticism give him an advantage over the opponent’s players in the air.
The 25-year-old centre-back is a solid box defender. He doesn’t leave himself too open inside the box, rather, he stays vigilant, watching the opposition’s movement.
The player loves to switch plays, making himself available for his teammates. He doesn’t isolate himself on the pitch, always available to receive passes.
The Frenchman likes to make line-breaking passes. He has the ability to sight his teammates up front, and locate him with his pass.
That’s why his combination with Levi Colwill will put Chelsea on fire this season. Of course, Mauricio Pochettino’s style of play revolves around pressing.
With his ball-carrying ability, he likes to dictate the team’s tempo, particularly in counterattacks. Also, he does put his pace and acceleration into play.
As a ball-playing centre-back, he loves to move to the midfield, connecting with his teammates. At the same time, he never leaves the defense line too open.
In addition, he likes to win ground duels. His aggressiveness on the ball makes everything easy for him, he’s definitely going to settle down well at Chelsea.