Can anyone else do what he does? Pundit defends Chelsea star player after poor performance against Middlesbrough  

Photo: Getty images

Jamie O’Hara has defended Cole Palmer amid criticisms trailing the 21-year-old’s performance for Chelsea during Tuesday’s Carabao Cup clash with Middlesbrough.

The Blues were beaten by Boro after a single goal from Hayden Hackney late in the first half.

However, the game might have gone Chelsea’s way on a different night, especially if Palmer had his shooting boots on.

The Chelsea attacker, who played as a false nine in the absence of Nicolas Jackson, had quite a handful of opportunities to win the game for the Blues, but he missed them all, including a 1v1 with the Boro goalie.

Palmer has come under harsh criticisms from fans after the match, but O’Hara thinks the former Manchester City man has done enough to be pardoned, even after a night out like that.

The pundit told talkSPORT: “People are putting the defeat against Middlesbrough on Cole Palmer.

“Okay, you tell me, what about Noni Madueke, Raheem Sterling, Moises Caicedo, Conor Gallagher, Enzo Fernandez?

“I mean, any danger of anyone else at Chelsea stepping up to the plate if Palmer has an off-night?”

We honestly agree that it’s a little too harsh to blame Palmer for the loss on Tuesday, when in fact, he might actually be the only player that put in a proper shift in that game. He might have missed a few chances, but at least, he made those efforts and got in great positions, whereas there were some of his teammates that did nothing, but misplace passes and lose the ball throughout the night.

Again, we are talking about a player that has scored eight league goals, despite not playing as a nine the whole time. We should cut him some slack.