Frank Leboeuf slams Mykhailo Mudryk after Chelsea’s draw with Aston Villa

Frank Leboeuf says Mykhailo Mudryk has ‘no clue’ how to play with his team-mates after he struggled again in Chelsea’s draw with Aston Villa.

Chelsea produced a spirited fightback to come from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Villa Park on Saturday evening, but Leboeuf was nevertheless concerned with Mudryk’s performance.

The Ukrainian, who moved to Chelsea in January 2023 in a deal worth up to £89m, has struggled at Stamford Bridge and once again flattered to deceive in the entertaining draw in Birmingham.

‘Now we have to talk about Mudryk,’ Leboeuf told ESPN. ‘Where was he?

‘That’s the problem with Mudryk. You give time to a young player to adapt, especially when you come from a country at war, so psychologically, it’s difficult.

‘But it has been a while now. It works for his country because he is scoring goals but it doesn’t work with Chelsea. He runs and plays fast, but he seems to lose it.

‘He seems to have no clue how football can be played together with all his team-mates. He has a feeling, subconsciously, he has something. Maybe a gift? But it’s like he never learned to play with his teammates.’

Chelsea beat London rivals Arsenal to a deal for Mudryk but the 23-year-old has scored just four goals in 42 Premier League games.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side were thrashed 5-0 by the Gunners last week and appeared to be heading to another defeat as Aston Villa took a commanding 2-0 lead thanks to a Marc Cucurella own goal and Morgan Rogers’ neat finish.

But Noni Madueke reduced Chelsea’s deficit and Conor Gallagher scored the equaliser before the visitors had a late winner ruled out by VAR.

Speaking after the Villa Park stalemate, Pochettino said: ‘The performance was great, against a very good team. Disappointed, but what can we do? We need to move on.

‘We are a young team. The performance was good. I’m so happy with the reaction.’

On Chelsea’s late goal being ruled out, Pochettino added: ‘Me and you and everyone in the stadium watching the game. They didn’t see a foul on the pitch and then VAR changed the decision of the referee.

‘For me, that was a normal challenge. The decision was there and that is it. For me, it [VAR technology] has damaged a little bit the Premier League and English football.

‘If we want to be the best league in the world, it should be protecting the spectacle and the decision.

‘At Wembley, for handball was a penalty against Manchester City and the referee didn’t check and the VAR didn’t advise the referee to see the incident. [It has] Damaged myself, damaged my team, my players, my fans.’

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