C.H.O. Three letters that mean quite a lot to Chelsea fans.
Since bursting onto the scene under Sarri, Callum Hudson-Odoi has been somewhat of a revelation – there’s no two ways about it. His directness, powerful dribbling and finishing ability has been a breath of fresh air compared to the aging duo of Willian and Pedro. He cemented his first XI place towards the end of last season and his importance to the club can be demonstrated by the meltdown of the fan base after his Achilles injury last year. None the less, he’s back, and he means business.
Ask anyone what the worst footballing injury is and they will likely say Achilles or ACL. There is just no guarantee that the player will able to make a full recovery. Ever since he went down against Burnley, there were questions whether he would make a full recovery. Would he ever be back to his explosive self that got him 10 goal contributions last season?
After what seemed an age, he finally made his return to the first team against Grimsby and made sure everyone knew he was back, with a well taken goal. Fresh off the back of signing a new bumper contract, it looked like nothing had changed.
The most impressive thing about his return from injury so far is how quickly he has got back to firing on all cylinders. The game against Ajax was the first since his return that he didn’t register a goal or an assist. In fact for both the first team and the England u21’s, he had recorded 7 goals or assists in 6 games.
What impressed me the most was his mentality through the whole recovery process. You can see through the mini documentary he made with Beats that his sole focus was getting back to where he was. It could be demoralising for a young player who has just made his breakthrough to be hit with such a challenge, but Callum took it in his stride and rose above it.
As the saying goes, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and in this case he is certainly come back stronger, with more desire to succeed and it seems he has found that killer instinct that he was lacking at times last year.
It’s fair to say, I think we’ve got our wonderkid back.