Falcao can play as dual striker, says Jose Mourinho
With Diego Costa an injury doubt for Community Shield, Columbian likely to feature
Chelsea’s Colombian striker Radamel Falcao during a team training session at Chelsea’s training ground in Stoke D’Abernon, south of London. Photograph: Getty Images
Falcao struggled to impress during a similar spell at Manchester United last season, but Mourinho has great faith in a player who will wear the number nine shirt for Chelsea.
Diego Costa shouldered most of the striking burden last season as a lone striker in a 4-2-3-1 system, but laboured after an explosive start.
Loic Remy offers pace and width but Falcao, Mourinho believes, could play in tandem with either.
Falcao only joined up with his new team mates in New York where Chelsea drew 2-2 with Barcelona in a friendly.
But Mourinho has already seen enough to believe he can make a big impact at Stamford Bridge.
“In the last 20 minutes against Barcelona (in last week’s friendly we played with Loic Remy and Falcao,” Mourinho said.
“They did very well not just to bring the team forward but also with one less player in midfield they closed the spaces in front of the midfield line. We can play with two.”
“Falcao came on and suddenly the team was direct and objective. They closed the lines and played in the opposition half. Falcao held the ball up very well.
“I’m very happy with his first week. I like him a lot as a player. The team play very well with a striker of his quality.
“He’s not just a guy that can score a goal; he can also contribute a lot to the quality of the game.”
Falcao is expected to play a role in Sunday’s Community Shield against Arsenal with Diego Costa a slight injury doubt.