After losing out on Romelu Lukaku, Premier League Champions Chelsea are now planning to make an offer for FC Torino striker Andrea Belotti.
According to a report in transfermarketweb, the Blues are preparing to table an offer for the €100-million-rated Italian international. Antonio Conte’s side will reportedly also face competition from Serie A giants AC Milan, who are also eyeing the former Palermo hitman.
The report goes on to state that the Rossoneri are still after the striker despite having been turned down once before. Milan are also said to be keeping an eye on Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, but that isn’t likely to stop them from making another attempt for Belotti.
Besides AC Milan, Torino have reportedly turned down enquiries from Arsenal and Napoli for the 23-year-old striker, who has had a stellar 2016/17 campaign. His 28 goals and 8 assists in 38 matches across all competitions put him amongst Europe’s most prolific strikers last season.
It was the best individual season of his career and his impressive performances saw him donning the Captain’s armband on numerous occasions towards the end of the campaign – all while courting interest from the likes of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Chelsea amongst others.
Earlier this year, the Blues were said to have had a €60 million bid for Belotti rejected by Torino, who insisted they meet his €100 million release clause, which said to be valid only for teams outside of Italy.
Chelsea subsequently began to focus on Romelu Lukaku after that. However, that saga culminated with the Belgian joining Manchester United, so the Premier League Champions seem to have reignited their interest in Belotti and Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata.
Antonio Conte’s side are in desperate need of a top quality striker as they begin to prepare for their title defence and also focus on their return to the UEFA Champions League without Diego Costa, who is set for a return to Atletico Madrid after three seasons at Stamford Bridge.
With a little over a month remaining for the start of the season, Michy Batshuayi and Loic Remy are the only strikers available to Conte. Tammy Abraham has signed for Swansea on loan, while Dominic Solanke has moved to arch rivals Liverpool and Remy is expected to depart as well.
Pre-season training has already begun and Conte will no doubt be desperate to get one or even two top class strikers to join up with the side so that he can prepare them in time for the start of the season. The Blues would do well to sort out this conundrum sooner rather than later in order to have the best possible start to the campaign.