Do Chelsea really need a new striker?

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With just a few days of the transfer window to go, Chelsea have already spent £32 million on two players – central defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic from Benfica and winger Mohamed Salah from FC Basel. However before the transfer window, many pundits, fans and journalists suggested that it was their strikeforce that the Blues needed to spend some money on, with players such as Diego Costa Hulk linked with moves to Stamford Bridge in December.

Diego Costa is currently being linked to Stamford Bridge
Diego Costa is currently being linked to Stamford Bridge

With one of the richest owners in the league, and over £50 million in sales from Juan Mata and Kevin De Bruyne this month, finances certainly aren’t the reason why no money has been spent on a striker. Now of course, the aforementioned rumours may be still happen, but if they don’t, people may well question Chelsea’s ability to win the league with such a small and in-prolific set of strikers. I first came up with the idea of this piece before Samuel Eto’o scored a hat-trick against Manchester United, so obviously the situation has improved slightly, but here are the league stats of the club’s first-team strikers:

  • Fernando Torres – Four goals in 17 appearances, including as a substitute (0.24 goals an appearance)
  • Demba Ba – One goal in eight appearances, including as a substitute (0.125 goals an appearance)
  • Samuel Eto’o – Six goals in 10 appearances, including as a substitute (0.6 goals an appearance)

But do Chelsea really need a new striker? In my opinion, no. Winger Eden Hazard is their top scorer this season, a stat that many believe just showcases the poor form of the strikers even more. But I think it doesn’t matter where the goals are coming from, as long as you are scoring them and winning games, it doesn’t really matter who scores them.

Eden Hazard is the club's top scorer in the league this season with 9 goals.
Eden Hazard is the club’s top scorer in the league this season with 9 goals.

It’s not like Torres, Ba and Eto’o are scoring no goals whatsoever, so if Hazard keeps on scoring, they should be just fine as long as the trio of strikers continue to contribute as well. If they can employ these tactics until the summer, Romelu Lukaku’s return from his loan at Everton will be almost like signing a new striker since the Belgian has spent the past two seasons away from West London.

Furthermore, Chelsea’s goalscoring situation isn’t as bad as everyone makes out it is. In the Premier League, they are only behind Liverpool and Manchester City in terms of goals scored. With the Premier League being as tight as it is at the moment, goal difference may well be a factor come the end of the season, with some pundits pointing out that Chelsea’s supposed lack of goals could come back to haunt them in this sense too. Now goal difference involves both goals scored and goals conceded. So, if the goals do slowly dry up as we get nearer to May, as long as their defence stays as solid as it has been all season, I see no reason why Chelsea’s goal difference should be affected.

Chelsea received £37.1 million from the sale of Juan Mata
Chelsea received £37.1 million from the sale of Juan Mata

Although someone like Diego Costa would be a fantastic signing for the Blues, I think that their money should stay put in Roman Abramovic’s pocket for now, so they have more money for signings in the summer. But that decision is of course is down to Jose Mourinho, who has been known to splash the cash whenever he can in the past…

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