Marcos Alonso is the next member of the Chelsea squad to go under the microscope in our series reviewing each player’s 2021/22 campaign…
One of our longest-serving players, Alonso achieved some notable firsts in the season just gone. He added the Super Cup and the Club World Cup to his already extensive trophy collection, and captained Chelsea for the first time in a competitive game. In all, he made 46 appearances across six different competitions, underlining his importance to Thomas Tuchel, especially in the wake of the serious injury suffered by Ben Chilwell in November.
Prior to that, at the start of the season, Tuchel described Chilwell as suffering from mental fatigue, handing Alonso the left wing-back berth for our opening six league fixtures, as well as the Super Cup triumph in Belfast. Alonso played the full two hours of that and converted his spot-kick, one of four successful penalties he took in shoot-outs in 2021/22.
The Spaniard then netted our maiden league goal of the campaign with a trademark free-kick, curled unerringly into the top corner against Crystal Palace. It epitomised a bright beginning for both Alonso and the Blues.
In our next home game, another 3-0 win, this time against Aston Villa, Alonso was handed the armband for the first time as a Chelsea player, reward for his long service. Regularly trusted with set-piece duty, Alonso then swung in the corner from which Thiago Silva headed us in front at Tottenham. It was one of six assists he registered in all competitions.
Busy at Christmas
Chilwell’s return to the fold meant Alonso had to settle for a watching brief for much of October and November, but he was soon back in the thick of it following the England international’s cruciate ligament injury. Alonso started 11 league games in a row over the hectic festive period, setting up goals against Leeds and Liverpool. As ever, his good fitness and availability proved invaluable with so many other Blues suffering from illness and injury, and he displayed his versatility by reverting to left-back as Tuchel temporarily favoured a four-man defence.
Prior to the Club World Cup success, in which Alonso played the semi-final, he netted the winner against Plymouth Argyle in the FA Cup.
On our return to England from Abu Dhabi, Alonso enjoyed a decisive streak in the final third. He set up Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic’s late winners against London rivals Crystal Palace and West Ham respectively, and netted typically well-struck efforts in back-to-back away games at Southampton and Manchester United.
In between those, he was desperately unlucky to see his pinpoint finish at the Bernabeu, that looked to have put us ahead on aggregate against his old club Real Madrid, ruled out by VAR for the most innocuous of handballs.
He played every minute of our two marathon domestic cup finals against Liverpool, coming as close as anyone to breaking the deadlock in the FA Cup showpiece with a vicious inswinging free-kick that beat Alisson but rattled the crossbar. He did find the net in our next game, a 1-1 draw with Leicester, in what would prove his final appearance of his sixth campaign at Stamford Bridge.
Marcos Alonso 2021/22 Chelsea stats
Unused sub: 10
Minutes played: 3,854
Marcos Alonso Premier League appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso played 28 games in the Premier League for Chelsea this season, coming off the bench for three of them.
Marcos Alonso Champions League appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso made eight appearances in the Champions League this season, six from the start.
Marcos Alonso FA Cup appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso played three times in the FA Cup this season, once from the bench.
Marcos Alonso Carabao Cup appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso made five appearances in the Carabao Cup this season, four from the start.
Marcos Alonso UEFA Super Cup appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso played all 120 minutes of the UEFA Super Cup.
Marcos Alonso FIFA Club World Cup appearances 2021/22
Marcos Alonso started the semi-final of the Club World Cup.
Marcos Alonso goals 2021/22
Marcos Alonso scored five goals for Chelsea in 2021/22, four in the Premier League and one in the FA Cup.