What You Need To Know –
You won’t find a single fan anywhere in the world that thinks Chelsea have enjoyed a decent season. They simply haven’t and, in fact, it’s been a disaster.
Sure, you can point the finger at managers Thomas Tuchel, Graham Potter and Frank Lampard but, in truth, the lack of a centre forward has been a real problem. Here we look at some of the strikers the Blues May target when the transfer window opens.
Will Chelsea still attract big names?
Before we get into the names of potential arrivals, a poor season does beg the question of whether or not Chelsea will be shopping in the elite market they’re used to. The answer to that is going to be critical in determining what targets they might have in their sights.
Our stance on this matter is slightly split. On one hand, the very truly elite will have no interest in joining a club in disarray and, more importantly, no European football for at least next season. That means the likes of Neymar, Karim Benzema and Erling Haaland are nothing more than Chelsea dreams.
The next layer down though would probably love to join Chelsea. The Blues have goalscoring issues for sure but they don’t have issues creating as evidenced by their xG. The lure of being the ‘go to guy’ whilst earning big bucks is obviously an appeal.
Related: Real Madrid Ready To Make A Push In Spring 2023
To the players
Tottenham striker Harry Kane has long been a striking option mentioned for Chelsea, but most people saw that move as a no go owing to the Chelsea-Tottenham dynamic. With the sports betting market suggesting Mauricio Pochettino will be the next Chelsea manager, though that could well change. Kane and Pochettino know each other well having spent several years together at Tottenham, which are the favorites in this season’s Premier League against Brentford at -120. Given that, reportedly, Kane is on Pochettino’s list of desired targets ahead of the summer.
Chelsea have the money to sign anyone they want and the lure of playing for Poch, as he is affectionately known, may well turn Kane’s head. There is one big stumbling block though – Daniel Levy. Levy, the Spurs chairman, is known for digging his heels in when he so chooses. This is likely to be one of those times.
Should Tottenham lose Kane to Chelsea it would be a bitter blow on so many levels. As a player, Kane guarantees you 20 goals a season in the Premier League. On top of that, he brings with him a wealth of experience and leadership and his actual ability on the pitch goes well beyond sticking the ball in the net.
If there is one thing that puts Chelsea off Harry Kane then it could be the long term vision of Todd Boehly, the club’s owner. Boehly has expressed his desire to recruit younger players and develop them into a team that dominates for years. Kane doesn’t tick that box but Napoli’s Victor Osimhen does.
Osimhen, 24, has spearheaded Napoli this season with a combination of electric pace, clever movement and deadly finishing making him one of the most feared forwards in the world – and most definitely in Serie A. He’s bagged 28 goals this term with five of those coming in just six Champions League games. His style of play would not look out of play in a Pochettino side.
The downsides to making a move for Osimhen are his price tag and his experience levels. Reports suggest that Napoli value Osimhen at north of £100m, which is a big fee for someone that’s unproven in the Premier League. Will the Blues baulk at that figure given how players such as their former strikers Romelu Lukaku and Tammy Abraham have “failed” the Chelsea test before being successful in Italy’s top tier?
Another option Chelsea are said to be considering to lead their line next season is another currently plying their trade in Italy – namely Lautaro Martinez. Whilst the question marks around how Martinez would transition to the Premier League still apply here, there is a bit more “proof in the pudding” compared to Osimhen. For one thing, Martinez is a World Cup winner but he’s all round more experienced despite only being a year older.
What we mean by that is that Martinez has performed at a higher level for longer, which may well be taken as a sign he’s more likely to transition to English football more smoothly. Martinez has racked up 23 Champions League appearances to Osimhen’s 11, he’s played 170 games in Europe’s big five leagues compared to Osimhen’s 121 and, at international level, Martinez has won 48 caps for Argentina versus Osimhen’s 23 for Nigeria.
Throw into the mix that Martinez is likely to be available for a lower transfer fee and doesn’t face the occasional rigmarole of having to leave part way through a season for the African Cup of Nations, which impacts the English league calendar, and he could be seen as the smarter business.
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