Man City: Could Haaland replace Aguero?
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Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia has a number of important decisions to make ahead of the summer transfer window. The Blues are in the market for a new striker to lead the line ahead of a renewed Premier League title bid next season, with Borussia Dortmund star Erling Haaland said to be at the top of Thomas Tuchel’s wish list.
Chelsea’s current options in attack are somewhat limited for a club with serious ambitions of winning domestic and European silverware.
Veteran forward Olivier Giroud is approaching the latter stages of his career at 34 years of age, while Tammy Abraham has struggled to hold down a place in the side since Frank Lampard’s departure.
Meanwhile, Timo Werner has failed to live up to expectations since arriving in the summer and has largely been deployed in a supporting role behind the central striker.
Tuchel has been forced to play Kai Havertz at the tip of Chelsea’s attacking trident in recent outings, highlighting the dire need for a top-class finisher to come in and provide a fierce cutting edge at the top of the pitch.
While Haaland is believed to be the club’s main target ahead of the summer months, the Blues are also said to be eyeing Inter Milan forward Romelu Lukaku, who failed to convince former boss Jose Mourinho of his worthiness at Stamford Bridge before being sold to Everton in 2014.
JUST IN: Tuchel breaks silence on Haaland ahead of Chelsea ‘transfer talks’
The Belgium international has been firing on all cylinders for the Serie A leaders this season, chipping in with 19 goals and seven assists to help put Antonio Conte’s side into a strong position to claim their first Scudetto for 11 years.
Chelsea were said to be keeping tabs on Lukaku as a potentially cheaper alternative to Haaland, who has reportedly been valued at £154million by Dortmund.
However, it has emerged that the Blues will need to stump up a fee in the region of £102m for their former player, according to Italian outlet Corriere Dello Sport.
With a £52m difference in price between the two forwards, it remains to be seen whether Granovskaia will go all out to pursue a move for top target Haaland with the knowledge that Lukaku, one of the club’s alternative options, is also likely to command a club-record transfer fee.
The report claims that Inter are facing potential losses of around £119m, largely as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and are aware of their need to balance the books.
Despite this, the club are believed to be keen on keeping hold of Lukaku and would only consider a monumental bid in order to part ways with their star man.
He remains contracted until the summer of 2024 after penning a five-year deal upon his arrival from Manchester United in 2019.
If Chelsea decide to pursue a move for the 27-year-old they could face stiff competition from the likes of Barcelona and Manchester City, who have also been mentioned in connection with his services.
The Spanish giants are, like Chelsea, firmly in the race for Haaland and could turn to Lukaku if they are unsuccessful.
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