Premier League • England

Chelsea find their own Erling Haaland as powerful striker becomes aware of Todd Boehly interest

Napoli striker Victor Osimhen

A striker that Chelsea believe can become their own version of Erling Haaland knows they want to sign him, according to a report.

Chelsea are in desperate need of a reliable centre-forward and have been for a long time. Several of their options over the years have struggled to replicate the standards they have shown at other clubs.

Ahead of next season, Chelsea are looking to move on from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has already been cut adrift from their Champions League squad.

Their plan is to bring in a powerful centre-forward to become their new target man. Indeed, they may well be casting envious glances at Manchester City, who signed Haaland last summer and have already seen him score 42 goals from 37 games.

According to the Evening Standard, though, Chelsea have now identified a target who they believe can do exactly what Haaland does.

The player in question is Victor Osimhen, who has scored 25 goals from 29 games for Napoli this season. It is likely to culminate in a Serie A winner’s medal, since their lead at the top of the table is big enough not to make his current injury seem like something that could derail them.

Beyond then, Napoli might find it tough to keep hold of the 24-year-old, despite there being another two seasons remaining on his contract.

Osimhen features highly on Man Utd’s shortlist of striker targets, along with Tottenham’s Harry Kane, as they look to address similar concerns. But according to the Evening Standard, Chelsea are “strong contenders” to win the race for the Nigeria international.

Furthermore, Osimhen – who conveniently idolised Didier Drogba growing up – already knows that Chelsea possess an interest in him.

Osimhen could become another record Chelsea purchase

For the Blues to sign him, though, Todd Boehly will have to sanction another huge spend. Napoli’s asking price will be above the €100million threshold, potentially stretching to €150m.

In Chelsea’s money, that means Osimhen could cost anywhere between £88m and £132m. After buying Enzo Fernandez for around £107m in January, Chelsea might have to break their transfer record again.

If Osimhen can adapt to the Premier League – and he has all the attributes for it – then he might well be worth it. The centre-forward issue has been troubling Chelsea for ages, but he is young enough and good enough to end their concerns for years to come if all goes to plan.

Chelsea, of course, have been here before. Their faith in Timo Werner or Romelu Lukaku never materialised into what they expected.

But something feels different about Osimhen. He is becoming a lethal centre-forward over in Italy, but excitingly looks as if he still has margin for improvement.

Only a few clubs will be able to afford him when the time comes for him to leave Napoli. Chelsea could feasibly be among those willing to pay.

READ MORECrucial Chelsea star to ditch Potter and secure Tuchel reunion at Bayern after obvious transfer message