It’s not a well-kept secret that Chelsea are in the market for a new striker this summer and have certainly not quite hit the heights in the forward department as expected this season.
Timo Werner and Tammy Abraham were joint top-scorers in all competitions in 2020/21 with 12 goals each but it was Jorginho with seven – all of them penalties – that topped the charts in the Premier League for the Blues.
Werner’s £49.5million signing hasn’t quite delivered what was hoped and expected in terms of goals as he takes time to adapt to the English game.
Olivier Giroud has penned a new one-year contract but is by no means guaranteed to stay, and the future of Abraham is very much shrouded in doubt after just five appearances under Tuchel since he replaced Frank Lampard.
Chelsea have subsequently been linked with moves for Erling Haaland, who is probably top of quite a few clubs’ wish lists this summer, while also a return to the club for Romelu Lukaku has been mooted.
The Belgian striker will be without Antonio Conte as his manager next season after the former Blues boss quit as the manager of the Nerazzurri having led them to their first Serie A title in nine years last season.
Lukaku has stated he’d like to stay at the San Siro but Inter’s dire financial situation might mean they look to cash in on the Belgian.
Neither Lukaku or Haaland would come cheap this summer if Chelsea decided to make a play for them but there is a potential alternative for Tuchel and technical director Petr Cech to explore.
RB Salzburg striker Patson Daka is rumoured to be interesting a few Premier League clubs this summer after starring in Austria, with West Ham and Liverpool reportedly two of those teams.
Salzburg is, of course, the former home of striker Haaland who left them in 2019 to join Borussia Dortmund for a bargain £17million.
Daka scored 34 goals in all competitions this season in 41 appearances so it is easy to see why there are some English clubs on alert to bring the 22-year-old to the Premier League.
It was a second successive excellent scoring season for Daka, who bagged 27 times in 2019/20.
As per FBref, Daka took 101 shots in the Austrian top flight in 2019/20, scoring 27 times. It’s hard to compare him to many Chelsea strikers but the obvious one would be Werner.
Chelsea’s German frontman scored six Premier League goals from 80 shots which works out at a conversion rate of 4.8%. Daka’s conversion rate was 27.27%.
Of course, the Austrian Football Bundesliga is not the Premier League, as Werner has found with the German Bundesliga and then arriving in England.
However, with reports in Austria suggesting that Daka could be available for as little as £17million this summer he would represent a far less expensive move for Tuchel to bolster his forward department.
But with that also comes the risk. In Lukaku, Chelsea would get a proven Premier League goalscorer who has also bagged a hatful in two seasons in Italy. Haaland is a goal machine and will probably score a boatload wherever he ends up.
So Daka, aged only 22 as well, might be a bit of a leftfield suggestion but if Chelsea deem their two top targets too expensive or are unable to lure them to west London, the alternative in Daka might bot be the worst choice.