It’s official now: Chelsea are in the market for a striker in the summer.
Jose Mourinho wanted to reinforce his strikeforce at the start of the season, but the Blues manager eventually ended up with just three recognised centre-forwards: Fernando Torres, Demba Ba and Samuel Eto’o.
While Torres has never really been anywhere near a hit at Stamford Bridge since his £50m move from Liverpool back in January 2011, Ba has been afford just two starts in the league all season by Mourinho.
Summer signing Eto’o, who is recovering from a hamstring injury at the moment and is perhaps the greatest African footballer of all time, has been satisfactory at best. The 33-year-old Cameroonian has made well use of his talent and intelligence to score eight goals in 19 Premier League appearances and three in four Champions League starts.
And now Mourinho has announced that he will recruit a top-class forward for the 2014-15 campaign.
"I don't think it's the moment to speak about next season and the market but it's clear to everybody that Chelsea next year wants to bring a striker," he said in the wake of Chelsea’s 1-0 away defeat to Crystal Palace in the Premier League on Saturday.
"What's the future for the other strikers? The ones who are staying are competing with the striker we are bringing [in]. And normally, at the end of the season, players that are not playing a lot or players who are not happy may prefer a change.
“That is also part of the market. We want to improve the team and the players and make some surgical movements in the transfer window."
Not that one needed any announcements from the self-proclaimed ‘Special One’ that he is in desperate need of a centre-forward. It has been doing the rounds that the former English and European champions are seeking to reinforce their attackline and to clear out some of the dead wood.
Atletico Madrid star Diego Costa is reported to be Chelsea’s number one target. The Brazil-born Spain international’s exploits have been well documented and although he may end up costing the London outfit over £40m, the Blues are willing to part with a lumpsome amount to make their team competitive.
Romelu Lukaku is also one who could be made part of the Chelsea unit next season.
The 20-year-old Belgian forward is enjoying a fruitful campaign on loan at Everton, having scored 12 goals and provided six assists in 26 Premier League matches so far.
However, the former Anderlecht youngster had an exchange of words with Mourinho earlier this season and it is unlikely that he will be welcomed by the Portuguese boss.