UCL: Watch out for Elseid Hysaj…the Napoli ace wanted by Chelsea

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Real Madrid may be banging in the goals right now, having netted 27 times in their last 10 games, but Los Blancos could find it very tough to maintain their high-scoring ways against Napoli tomorrow night. And that’s largely down to Elseid Hysaj.

The Albanian right-back is one of the hottest properties in Italian football right now, having missed just one game of Napoli’s impressive Serie A campaign in 2015-16, as they finished second, conceding just 32 goals.

A powerful and extremely reliable defensive presence with a fantastic engine, the Albanian international has been a rock at the back for Gli Azzurri, while he’s also proved useful at the other end, creating regular chances for their forward line.

While stats don’t tell you everything, Hysaj’s couldn’t be much more impressive this season. The 23-year-old has an 87 per cent pass completion rate, while he’s won well over half of the duels he’s been involved in, and boasts a high rate of interceptions.

That’s unsurprisingly seen interest from elsewhere, with Chelsea reportedly desperate to secure his services this summer, with Branislav Ivanovic not yet replaced following his departure to Zenit St Petersburg last month.

If we’re being ultra-critical, one thing Hysaj does needs to improve is his finishing. The 22-year-old has actually got 67 per cent of his attempts on target this season, but is yet to score since joining the Calabrian outfit in 2015.

However, time and again the former Empoli man has stepped up on the big occasions, and there’s 22/1 on offer for Hysaj to break his scoring duck against Real Madrid.

Meanwhile, the Italian outfit are priced at 5/1 for victory at the Bernabeu, with odds of 13/2 for the visitors to secure a 10th clean sheet of the campaign.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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Dave Burin

Dave graduated with an MA in English Literature at Durham University, and worked in marketing before joining the Ladbrokes News team. A Man United fan and avid groundhopper, he’s also an ardent follower of Rugby League. You can usually find him at a ground near you, clutching a big cup of tea.