Whilst Kai Havertz ’s performances playing up top in recent weeks have provided real hope he is starting to show his immense talent, Chelsea are still expected to aim big when it comes to landing a new No.9 in the summer.
With Olivier Giroud expected to leave when his contract expires and Tammy Abraham clearly out of favour with Thomas Tuchel – not to mention Timo Werner only managing three goals since November 7 – it seems a new striker is at the top of the shopping list for Roman Abramovich this summer.
The club spent more than £200 million last year and are expected to shell out once again as they look to find the man who can fire the Blues to the Premier League title next season.
Two of their reported transfer targets are Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland and Inter Milan’s Romelu Lukaku, and there have been updates on both men in the last 24 hours.
Haaland ‘will remain a Dortmund player next year’
Chelsea’s hopes of potentially landing Erling Haaland appear to be over – for this summer at least.
Haaland has been attracting interest from a host of clubs, including both Manchester sides, Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Last week there were reports Dortmund may be willing to sell the 20-year-old for around £130 million in the coming months with the player said to have a release clause of around £65 million becoming active in the summer of 2022.
However, BVB chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke said: "I've known [Haaland’s agent] Mino Raiola for a long time and get along well with him. It's no problem for us. Erling Haaland will remain a Borussia Dortmund player next year."
Speaking to Sport1 broadcaster's Doppelpass program, Dortmund sporting director Sebastian Kehl added: "I understand that Erling Haaland will play for Borussia Dortmund in the new season.
"Erling totally agrees. I see him every day and I can say that he completely identifies with the club."
Lukaku’s message amid Chelsea interest
Romelu Lukaku seemed to cool speculation linking him with a return to Chelsea after stressing how proud he is to play for Inter Milan.
Lukaku joined Chelsea from Anderlecht for £18m in August 2011 whilst still only 18 years old but played only 15 games for the club before departing for Everton.
The 27-year-old’s career has flourished since and after being linked with a return to Stamford Bridge in the past, the Belgium star is once again a reported target for the Blues.
However, Lukaku appears reluctant to leave Inter, having bagged 61 goals in 92 appearances for the recently-crowned Serie A champions since joining in 2019 for £73 million.
"‘I am so happy for all the Inter fans in the world, for the team, the staff, the president and everyone," Lukaku told Sky Sport Italia after their title success. "It was a wonderful year for us, I am truly proud to play for Inter."
Asked if this was his best season to date, he added: "Last year was good too, but yes, this was the best of my career.
"It’s wonderful and I hope to continue like this. I want to thank everyone, I am truly so happy."
Moyes rules out £40 million move for Abraham
West Ham United manager David Moyes has ruled out a move for Tammy Abraham if Chelsea insist on holding out for £40 million for the England striker, as has been reported.
Abraham has only made seven appearances under Thomas Tuchel but still finds himself as the club’s top goalscorer this season, with 12 goals in 32 games in all competitions.
His goals-per-90 rate of 0.52 is more than twice as impressive as Werner’s 0.23 but it has counted for little in recent months, as Tuchel has more often than not opted for Werner or Kai Havertz through the middle.
Last week the Telegraph claimed Chelsea would be willing to sell Abraham this summer if a club was to make an offer in the region of £40 million, with West Ham among the clubs said to be keen.
“It would rule us out completely. We will be ruled out,” Moyes replied, when asked about the £40 million price tag.
“So if that’s the figure and that’s what’s being said, we are ruled out.
“We don’t have that money, we don’t have that to buy a striker at that price, no.
“Is that sort of figure our total spend? It may well be. But you never know here.
“I don’t think we will be making a purchase of that for any one player. I’d be surprised if we were.”