With Chelsea failing to find the back of the net against West Ham, and their strikers far from consistent, could they spring a surprise today?
With the arrivals of Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah, and the seemingly imminent signing of Kurt Zouma, Chelsea can sit back and think of their January shopping as a case of a job well done.
Or can they? Because with Zouma tipped to head straight back on loan and Salah most likely (at least for the short term) to take Juan Mata’s place on the bench, only Matic is set to have an immediate and vital impact on the Blues’ current campaign.
Salah has the talent to change games, have no doubt about that. But what Jose Mourinho really needs – or at least what I think he does – is a striker.
I know, not exactly an original thought. And given the possibility of signing a Diego Costa or a Radamel Falcao next summer, surely it makes sense to wait rather than bring in a second-rate alternative.
But with the Premier League title race as tight as it is, and with the Champions League tougher than ever, a prolific front-man could be the difference between Mourinho ending his second first season at Stamford Bridge with a trophy or two, and ending it with little more than a frown.
Today is a day for dreaming. It is a day for fans of clubs across the country to think “what if”.
With every unsubstantiated report, every tweet and every whisper, fans imagine hypothetical futures in which new players change everything.
Chelsea may have all-but-completed their January business; and Mourinho may think he has enough to add more silverware to his substantial collection. But considering the Blues had 39 shots against West Ham United and failed to score from a single one of them, it may not be over-exaggerating to say that an out-and-out, quality, expensive-but-necessary goal-scorer, could see Chelsea cross the line ahead of those sides they are doing well to keep up with – most notably Manchester City.
So Jose…will you be the one to spring this transfer window’s biggest surprise? In just a few short hours, we will know.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald