The number one priority in the transfer market for Chelsea’s new owners this summer surely has to be a top centre-forward to replace Romelu Lukaku.
The Blues thought they’d sorted out their issues in attack by signing Lukaku from Inter Milan last summer, but it’s gone badly wrong for the club, who have suffered defeats in two cup finals, and who have seen what looked like being a serious title challenge fall away and end up being a slow march to third place.
The numbers are obvious: goals are Chelsea’s biggest problem. In fairness, it’s not just Lukaku, with other recent signings like Timo Werner and Kai Havertz not really proving good enough in that department either, even if they’re not expected to be 25-30 goal-a-season players in quite the same way.
Lukaku cost big money and has simply not adjusted to Thomas Tuchel’s side. A recent report from The Athletic claimed that the manager and his staff were surprised at how much the Belgium international had failed to fit in.
As good as Lukaku can be on his day, he’s not a one-man show up front; he has so often played best with a strike partner alongside him, with Tuchel’s style demanding too much of him, leaving him isolated and requiring him to do more running than seems ideal for a player of his fitness.
Still, this has been a recurring problem for Chelsea, who have signed one flop after another in attack during the Roman Abramovich era. Lukaku is simply the latest in the list containing other disappointing big names like Fernando Torres, Andriy Shevchenko, Radamel Falcao, Alvaro Morata and Gonzalo Higuain.
In truth, the only real success stories of the Abramovich era have been Didier Drogba and Diego Costa, which is not great in nearly 20 years. Todd Boehly needs to ensure he kicks start his stint at the club with more success in this crucial position.
Darwin Nunez transfer is surely the answer for Chelsea
There are plenty of interesting options out there, but the obvious place for Chelsea to start is surely with Benfica front-man Darwin Nunez.
The Uruguay international has scored 34 goals in 41 games in all competitions this season, can create goals too, works hard to put pressure on defenders, and is still only 22 years of age.
Best of all, he might not even be as expensive as initially thought, with The Athletic stating his asking price may have been reduced to around €60million.
That’s an absolute bargain for a player who surely has the potential to be up there with the likes of Erling Haaland and Dusan Vlahovic as this generation’s best strikers. If Chelsea don’t move for him quickly, one of their rivals surely will, with The Athletic mentioning strong interest from Manchester United.
CFC may be tempted to give Lukaku another chance, but they need to be ruthless. Nunez looks a much better fit, and is available for very decent money. City have just signed Haaland even though they’re already 20 points ahead of Tuchel’s side in the table this season.
This is an unmissable opportunity for Chelsea and their new owners must go all out to get the signing done once their takeover is complete.