Lionel Messi. Cristiano Ronaldo. Neither of them are available? Fine, let’s take a look at the next best options.
We’ve finally hit a purple patch, and have found a gear in which we play very comfortably. We’re watching a different Chelsea to what we’re used to seeing. And it’s working. What we are missing though, is a big name centre-forward. Someone who can finish off our beautiful midfield moves. Someone who pushes us onto a level playing field with Manchester United, Manchester City, Real Madrid, Barcelona e.t.c. It seems the issue will be resolved with chief-executive, Ron Gourlay, confirming that we’ll be bringing in 2-3 new players in the summer. So let’s take a look at the kind of players our new striker will be around.
Eden Hazard has found exceptional form since “kicking” the Ball-‘Man’. He’s very effective cutting in from that left side, and I’ve personally likened his play to Cristiano Ronaldo’s, when he played for Manchester United. He’s going from strength to strength, and he’s a centre-forward’s dream to play with.
Then we have Juan Mata. Let alone Chelsea fans, I’m sure most football fans would have endless amount of praise for the little man. He’s so comfortable interchanging with Hazard and either Oscar or Moses on the right, and it’s best we keep it that way. His vision is exquisite, however I do think he could work on releasing the ball quicker.
Super Victor Moses. He has it all – Pace, change of pace, skill, great delivery, great shot – And overall, he provides a rawness which doesn’t exist amongst our technically gifted players, who prefer playing the perfect way.
Marko Marin is a player I believe will need till next season to prove his worth, and it’s no coincidence that he was scouted by several top clubs over of the past two years. His best position is on the left-wing, however, he’d work best in a 4-3-3 formation, as he likes to glide between the right-back and centre-back, with the ball.
I don’t want to get into what Oscar provides us in the front 3, as I strongly believe he’s built for the midfield role. His quick feet, change of pace and the way he dictates a game is most effective when he’s in the central/attacking midfield role. We’ve seen this regularly when he plays for Brazil. He also makes the odd contribution in the front 3.
One thing in common among these guys is that they love providing, and working for the team. They’re a centre-forward’s dream to work with, and bringing in a top centre-forward will only enhance the high-level of football players like Hazard and Mata are currently displaying.
Before I go through them, I’d like to say my preferred centre-forward team for next season would be Radamel Falcao, Demba Ba and possibly Romelu Lukaku. Reasons listed below.
Centre forwards, let’s go through them:
I can confirm he’s the one the board want. All £38m of him. Many see him as the perfect centre-forward. What he lacks in height he makes up for with a spectacular jump, he can be raw, he can be technical, he’s quick, sniffs out defensive frailties, and to me, he is the perfect centre-forward. Without a shadow of a doubt, he will fill the hole Drogba left when he made his Stamford Bridge exit. He has ‘class’ stamped all over him, is a liked person off the field, and he’s a nightmare for oppositions on the field. I can see him working very well with our attacking midfielders, and expect him to be a Chelsea player come Summer.
He’s always been the type of centre-forward you don’t want your team’s defence to face. Cavani’s an absolute nuisance and extremely difficult to deal with. My only problem with Cavani is that against top defences, he does tend to look a bit ordinary, which was the case at the Olympics, and on a few occasions last year. He also can be a pretty frustrating player at times, he’s not the best at passing around, and tends to switch off. That aside, he is a great centre-forward, one of the best on his day, but knowing how we play, I’d rather we went for Falcao, in all honesty, who would give us that bit of inspiration knowing he can create something from nothing. I also believe he’s Real Madrid or Manchester City bound, as both clubs are lacking a number in the centre-forward department, and given that every rumour circulating about Falcao is pointing in Chelsea’s direction, I’d definitely have my money on Cavani being a Real or City player in the Summer.
He’s interesting, Neymar. We know what he’s capable of as a winger, but he has played as a centre-forward a few times for Santos and for Brazil, and I can tell you, he’s brilliant. He’s not the strongest but he makes up for that with excellent vision, pace and extraordinary skill. I feel out of the 3, Neymar would suit our attacking players, like Hazard and Mata, the most. We’ve become a passing team, and this is something Neymar would absolutely love being a part of, being the centre of all our midfield moves. The problem with Neymar, though, is that he has some sort of agreement with Sandro Rossell, Barcelona official. However, should a move fall through, Chelsea directors should pounce at the opportunity of bringing in a player like Neymar. It’s hard to accept how much of a difference he’d be to us now, but from what I’ve seen of him, he’d be the perfect ‘nueve falso’ or ‘false 9’ in that formation.
What We Have:
Yes, every Chelsea fan has seen what he’s capable of. He’s got great feet, pace and a great eye for goal. He’s a player that has a lot in his locker, and it just so happens that his mother fed him the right stuff, because his physique for a 19 year old is scary. Built like a tank, he came to Chelsea a bulky, good bulky, teen hungry for opportunities to play for the club he supported as a kid. Ever since he was at Anderlecht, he’s been compared to the great Didier Drogba. However, the only similarity between them is strength. Immaculate strength. Other than that, he’s hardly like Drogba. He’s a pure centre-forward, while Drogba is a pure, raw opportunist. Drogba would hit it at first sight, while Lukaku likes holding the ball at his feet and passing it around before powering his way through a defence.
At 19, he still has a lot to learn, and it’s a tough call whether to bring him in next season or the season after. Personal opinion, I feel a kid with the amount of talent he possesses needs regular football, and bringing in another CF in the summer will simply not give him that. It looks as though the board want to bring him back, based on what Steve Clarke said last weekend. Either way, we have a fantastic striker signed to Chelsea, and he definitely has a bright future ahead of him.
His career at Chelsea can be summed up in one word – Hope. We’ve hoped to see the Torres that we were used to seeing before he signed for Chelsea, we hoped he’d score more goals, we hoped he’d enjoy a great time at Chelsea, and the exact same goes for him. It just simply hasn’t worked out. Rumoured to be on £170,000 a week, I feel Torres has run out of fuel, and needs to be re-fuelled back in Spain. Whether a loan deal to Atletico would be enough to convince them to lower Falcao’s price, who knows. Maybe a permanent deal will be the best for all concerned, but one thing’s for sure, Torres can’t go on like this. Like Shevchenko, it was only by chance, and the fact that he had Drogba to battle against, that things haven’t worked out. It’s always nice to see him score, when he does, and it’s obviously because we put so much hope and faith in him that we get repaid very slowly but in large amounts. He’s one of the best centre-forwards this league has seen, and while it is a shame things haven’t gone to plan, he can hold his head high and boast proudly about his achievements in English, European and International football.
Essential. We desperately needed a centre-forward like Ba, one that is effective, not quite world-class, but good enough to handle most defences in the league. I’ll make this short and sweet, the guy is an integral part of our squad, and he’s the sort of player you would want either starting or coming off the bench as an impact sub or as a player that will hold the ball to hold on to a lead.
Wonderful player, still young and he does need a few seasons out on loan. He needs to play higher quality football for regular amounts of time, and in the end, I think he’ll come through shining from nowhere. I personally have big hopes for this kid and I believe he’ll be good enough to break into Chelsea’s first team someday, very soon.
So I’ve listed what centre-forward team I’d like at Chelsea, and there are several other young prospects I’ve left to talk about in another article, but I want to know if you think there are better options in that position, and more importantly, why you think they’d suit us better.
Leave your comments below or @DrogBOSS
~ Brian Clough – “I wouldn’t say I’m the best manager, but I’m in the top one.” ~