Liverpool: Is it time for Salah to leave?
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Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia looks set for a busy transfer window ahead of next season, with the Blues squad in need of a few tweaks in order to stand the best chance of mounting a renewed Premier League title challenge. The west London club were the division’s biggest spenders last summer, shelling out a whopping total of £222m to bring the likes of Kai Havertz, Timo Werner and Edouard Mendy to Stamford Bridge.
Since Thomas Tuchel was appointed to replace Frank Lampard in January, Chelsea have emerged as one of Europe’s strongest sides.
The 47-year-old’s hard work has been rewarded with a place in this year’s Champions League final, with the Blues set to face Manchester City in Istanbul for the greatest prize in club football later this month.
Despite their rapid rise since the turn of the year, it seems likely that at least one attacker will be on Granovskaia’s shopping list during the summer months.
Chelsea’s current options at the very top of the pitch are somewhat limited, with utility man Havertz stepping in to lead the line as of late.
Olivier Giroud is approaching the end of his career at 34 years of age, while Tammy Abraham appears to be edging closer to a Stamford Bridge exit with Aston Villa said to be keen on his signature.
JUST IN: Chelsea join Salah transfer race as Liverpool star added to shortlist
Meanwhile, Werner has struggled to live up to expectations since joining the Blues and has often been deployed in a supporting role as a result.
A number of potential targets have been linked with Chelsea in advance of next season, including Borussia Dortmund talisman Erling Haaland and Inter Milan’s Romelu Lukaku.
Another name to have been mentioned in connection with Chelsea in recent days has been that of Mohamed Salah, with the Egyptian forward’s future at Liverpool seemingly in doubt ahead of the summer.
The Blues are said to be tracking his situation on Merseyside with a keen interest after the 28-year-old previously refused to voice his commitment to last year’s Premier League champions on a long-term basis.
Although an approach for Salah might not seem like a bad idea, Chelsea could reap the rewards of resisting the urge to seal a Stamford Bridge return for their former player.
The Liverpool winger is undoubtedly a world-class talent when firing on all cylinders, but Tuchel’s overwhelming priorities lie elsewhere.
A centre-forward will be the order of the day this summer, as Chelsea’s dressing room is already stacked with players able to thrive behind the lone striker in the German manager’s 3-4-2-1 system.
Werner, Mason Mount, Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic are all more than capable of dictating play between the lines, with the quartet providing four adequate options in Salah’s preferred position.
Chelsea could put their transfer budget to better use by financing a move for Haaland or Lukaku, who would both address the need for an elite finisher to occupy the No 9 role.
It also remains to be seen whether Salah would be able to replicate his best Liverpool form for the Blues in a different system, while there would be questions over his personal stance on rejoining the club where he failed to stamp his authority between 2014 and 2016.
His previous spell in the capital did not go entirely to plan, with the illustrious forward managing a grand total of just two goals from 13 appearances.
He has recently hinted at a desire to join Real Madrid or Barcelona before his eventual retirement, telling AS back in December that the El Clasico pair are ‘top clubs’ and insisting that his immediate future rests in Liverpool’s hands.
It seems unlikely that Chelsea would be able to land Salah with the Spanish duo seemingly ahead of the Blues in the pecking order.
Meanwhile, Liverpool will surely be eager to keep hold of their star man and current top scorer, and there is a strong possibility that he will remain on Merseyside until at least the end of next season.
The bottom line is that a move to Chelsea would not make too much sense given the Stamford Bridge club’s aims of strengthening in other areas of the pitch.
Salah remains one of the Premier League’s best players and has every chance of achieving continued success at Liverpool for as long as he is prepared to stay within their ranks.
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