The upcoming Premier League season is just around the corner for Chelsea. Under a new regime led by Italian schemer Maurizio Sarri, the Blues’ preparations are well underway. The club hierarchy is keen to support the new manager with a fresh batch of recruits, yet the arrivals have been relatively slow, with Chelsea missing out on a couple of transfer targets, especially ones viewed to provide competition in the striker role for Alvaro Morata and co.
Juve’s Gonzalo Higuain has already gone to Milan and Robert Lewandowski has been recently declared unavailable by Bayern’s coach and club suits. With that, the club are yet to add a new striker but with Sarri declaring that he prefers to work with what he has, we will now take a look at which ones are currently available for him.
The 25-year-old did not feature for Spain in the World Cup and hence has been able to train with Chelsea since the beginning of pre-season. Morata has started in all three of the Blues’ summer fixtures so far but is yet to find the net, including in their last match against Arsenal where his spot kick was saved by Petr Cech. However, Sarri does rate the former Juventus striker, who can contribute with his doggedness and industry upfront if a bit lacking proficiency in front of goal.
Despite just returning to Cobham due to his exertions with Belgium at the World Cup, Sarri sees the former Marseille frontman as a key member of his squad for the upcoming campaign. Batshuayi impressed while on loan at Dortmund in the second half of last season but more importantly, his style of play suits the Italian’s approach. Perhaps that is why Sarri reportedly prevented another temporary switch for Batshuayi, who he sees as competing against Morata for the central role in a front three.
The World Cup winner is yet to report for training at West London but rumours have started circling the Frenchman about a potential switch to the south of France despite just arriving in January. Despite his towering physique, Giroud is merely not a classic centre-forward. He has a classy touch and is willing to put in the hard yards in front both defensively and offensively, yet his lack of pace and general style of play will not fit into the Italian’s system. Also, it is unlikely that Sarri will see Giroud as a super sub as he always remains faithful to his way of playing regardless of a game’s particular situation.
The highly-rated striker feels the upcoming season is the time to finally make his mark with his parent club. Sarri has recently said he is keen on bringing in the Blues youngsters into the fore, a statement that the 20-year-old has taken to heart. Yet in the three pre-season games that he has played a part in, Abraham’s performances can be considered okay at best, with the dazzling displays of fellow academy graduate Callum Hudson-Odoi not helping his cause, if rather in unintended circumstances. Perhaps ironic, but only another loan move away from Stamford Bridge will allow Abraham the opportunity to showcase his credentials to Chelsea.
Like Abraham, the Brazilian striker was buoyed by Sarri’s statement about integrating the club’s youth players into the senior squad but again, like Abraham, Piazon did not convince in the three pre-season matches that he has played in. In fact, the 24-year-old is below his fellow academy graduate in the pecking order and Piazon may have to settle for another loan move, a club policy he has recently had changed his view of since voicing his disapproval of it back in 2016.