Which Striker Should Chelsea Sign?

Which goal scoring threat should Chelsea sign during the summer transfer window to provide them with a much needed boost in attack? Today on the blog Amit Singh from Think Football considers the likely transfer targets.

Welcome To Chelsea

Chelsea’s three strikers (including Daniel Sturridge) managed to net just eleven Premier League goals between them for Chelsea last season. Such a dismal return, including just two goals for Demba Ba and just the eight league goals from Fernando Torres (with only one coming in 2013) has led to increased speculation that Chelsea will break the bank for a big name striker this summer.

Chelsea major transfer target in the last few years, Radamel Falcao opted to join AS Monaco, so who else might Chelsea turn too in their hunt for a new hit-man?

Will Chelsea Sign Edison Cavani?

Edison Cavani is probably the most high profile striker available for transfer this summer. The Uruguayan centre-forward, currently at Napoli, can reportedly be bought if his buy-out clause (reported to be around £51 million) is met. At 26 Cavani is very much a player in his prime having scored 78 league goals in just 104 appearances since joining Napoli from Palermo.

Cavani's prolific form would make it difficult to see him not being a success in the Premier League, with him also having managed five goals in eight games in last season's Champions League, including a header against Chelsea. Chelsea may try to use Fernando Torres as a make-weight in any move to lower the asking price, given that Rafael Benitez is the new Napoli manager, having worked with Torres at both Liverpool and Chelsea.

Verdict: Cavani’s record is clearly incredible but he has already indicated that Real Madrid is a ‘dream club’ which might make them his number one destination. Manchester City are also in the hunt for a striker and Chelsea might subsequently be reluctant to get into a bidding war over wages with a club as well financed as Manchester City.

Any move for Cavani would also require a significant investment, close to the £50 million mark which may put Abramovich off given that he previously sanctioned two big money moves for strikers in the form of Fernando Torres and Andriy Shevchenko, with neither move working out.

Cavani's Club After Summer Transfer Window Odds

 SkybetBetVictorLadbrokes
Real Madrid 3.75 6.00 5.50
Chelsea 1.33 1.36 1.33
Manchester City 9.00 13.00 9.00

Odds as at 26th June 2013.

Will Chelsea Sign Robert Lewandowski?

Robert Lewandowski will reportedly not be sold to Bayern Munich this summer, meaning that a Premier League club could sign him, given that he will be going into the last year of his contract. Lewandowski scored four times against Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid side in the Champions League semi-final so he knows full well what the Polish hitman can do. His prolific goal-scoring form propelled Dortmund to the Champions League final in May as well as helping the side reach back to back Bundesliga titles prior to this season.

The Polish international is arguably one of the best strikers in Europe having scored 46 goals in just 65 games over the last two Bundesliga campaigns, as well as scoring ten goals in twelve appearances in this seasons Champions League. 

Verdict: Given that he is just 24 years of age and will be available at a much cheaper price than Cavani he may well represent the best option, if Chelsea are willing to pay £25-30 million for a player with just a year left to run on his contract. That being said there will be stiff competition for his signature with Bayern Munich and Manchester United still interested. Not only that but Dortmund might play hard ball and simply refuse to sell in light of already losing Mario Gotze to Munich.

Lewandowski's Club After Summer Transfer Window Odds

 SkybetBetVictorLadbrokes
Bayern Munich 1.67 3.25 3.00
Manchester United 3.00 4.50 4.00
Chelsea 7.00 11.00 13.00
Real Madrid 6.00 15.00 15.00

Odds as at 26th June 2013.

How About Wayne Rooney?

Wayne Rooney has reportedly handed in a transfer request at Manchester United and as such has been linked with most of Europe’s richest clubs. Jose Mourinho has already indicated that he would be keen on a move for the England striker stating that he should move to where makes him ‘happiest.’ United won’t want to sell their second top domestic goal scorer, especially not to a Premier League rival but given his intent to leave they might be willing to accept an offer if no European clubs come in with a big enough offer.

Rooney’s versatility is another plus as he can play as the lone striker as well as behind the forward as one of the ‘three amigos.’ For the squad game this will be crucial and would certainly appeal to Mourinho.

Verdict: United’s reluctance to sell to another Premier League club, coupled with Rooney’s fitness problems might not make him the most viable option for Chelsea. At 27 years old and with a questionable attitude as well as having had a decline in form this year Chelsea might look elsewhere, given that they invested heavily in a 27 year old Torres from a Premier League rival back in 2011, which drastically backfired.

Rooney Club After Summer Transfer Window Odds

 SkybetBetVictorLadbrokes
Manchester United NA NA 2.00
Chelsea 5.00 4.00 5.50
Arsenal 3.20 3.00 6.00
Real Madrid 6.50 5.00 8.00

Odds as at 26th June 2013.

Or Edin Dzeko?

Edin Dzeko is a player who has been tentatively linked with a move to Chelsea in the last few weeks. Manchester City are looking to offload last season’s top goal scorer and would apparently let Chelsea make a move for the Bosnian captain if Chelsea cool their interest in Edison Cavani.

Dzeko was City’s top scorer with fourteen league goals last season (more than Chelsea’s three forwards combined), which could make him an attractive target at what be a relatively cheap price. Dzeko's height, at 6 ft 4, would also be a plus as Mourinho likes to have a big striker who can act as an aerial outlet within his squad.

Verdict: Dzeko is better than Ba and Torres but it’s difficult to say whether he’d be that much more effective than Romelu Lukaku, who himself scored seventeen league goals last season. The Belgian striker is similar to Dzeko in terms of offering a great aerial ability and thus might make a move for Dzeko redundant. Any move for Dzeko would probably be as a last resort, rather than a first choice.

Dzeko's Club After Summer Transfer Window Odds

 SkybetBetVictorLadbrokes
Chelsea 3.00 2.50 2.50
Napoli 7.00 5.00 5.00
Bor Dortmund 6.00 8.00 5.50

Odds as at 26th June 2013.

 

 

Follow Think Football on Twitter:@Think_Football

And visit Think Football for more great football analysis: ThinkFootball.co.uk