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Who should take Willian’s No.10 shirt at Chelsea?

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Football heritage

Chelsea FC v AFC Bournemouth - Premier League Photo by Ivan Yordanov/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Gavin Peacock, Mark Hughes, Pierluigi Casiraghi, Slaviša Jokanović, Joe Cole, Yossi Benayoun, Juan Mata, Eden Hazard, and Willian. Those are the names that have worn the No.10 Chelsea shirt since 1993, which is when shirt numbers started getting assigned to players rather than positions.

Willian had taken on the mantle of the No.10 after Hazard’s departure last summer, but he’s now gone to Arsenal (where he will wear No.12), which means we have a vacancy. The No.10 shirt hasn’t stood empty since the 2002-03 season.

So, the big question becomes, who should take the now available number? Should it be one of the newcomers? Hakim Ziyech had worn both 10 and 22 at Ajax (like Willian at Chelsea!), and had the 10 shirt at his two previous clubs as well. Timo Werner looks a shoo-in for Pedro’s old No.11 (just as at Leipzig) meanwhile, but he has yet to pick a number. And Kai Havertz will surely want something other than No.29 if he does come, and he had worn No.10 for the Leverkusen and Germany youth teams some years ago.

Or should it be one of the more eligible candidates already at the club? Christian Pulisic comes to mind immediately, the US Men’s National Team’s No.10. He currently has Willian’s previous number, No.22, which he also had at Borussia Dortmund. Mason Mount has had the No.8 or the No.19 in senior football, but he has worn No.10 before in the youth teams. Would Callum Hudson-Odoi be ready for the big number? It would be a bold move, but perhaps one that could serve as tremendous motivation?

Or should it go to someone I hadn’t thought of? If we give to Kepa, we could give the No.1 shirt to Oblak, amirite?

(Unfortunately our polls don’t show up in AMP or on Apple News, so you’ll have to open this post in an actual browser, mobile or desktop, to vote.)

Poll

Who should be Chelsea’s next No.10?

This poll is closed

  • 3%
    Callum Hudson-Odoi
    (166 votes)
  • 57%
    Christian Pulisic
    (2908 votes)
  • 12%
    Hakim Ziyech
    (647 votes)
  • 16%
    Kai Havertz
    (847 votes)
  • 3%
    Mason Mount
    (175 votes)
  • 0%
    Timo Werner
    (47 votes)
  • 3%
    no one / leave it open
    (171 votes)
  • 1%
    Kepa / someone else
    (84 votes)
5045 votes total Vote Now