Strikers Chelsea Manager Jose Mourinho Should Consider for a January Transfer
"[If you] ask if I would like my strikers to score eight, 10, 12 goals [already this season], then yes, I would," reflected Jose Mourinho on the back of that loss.
"If they had we would be top of the league. That's the reality."
The Guardian's coverage of Mourinho's post-match press conference—and that from many other media outlets—painted the picture of a somewhat subdued manager.
He hasn't resorted to publicly criticizing Fernando Torres, Demba Ba and Samuel Eto'o just yet, but Mourinho knows a combined return of four league goals between them isn't good enough if the Blues are to sustain their title challenge.
Arsenal may have only capitalized on Chelsea's defeat by picking up a point with a draw against Everton, but point or not, it means Chelsea are beginning to lose ground on the Premier League leaders, which will concern their manager.
When he looks at his options to combat that, however, his trio of strikers are struggling to live up to their world-class billing.
Something has to give: Either Torres, Ba and Eto'o rediscover their appetite for goals, or with the wealth they have at their disposal, Chelsea simply bring in new recruits.
Thus far, it appears the Blues are hoping for the former, as Mourinho continues to intimate he will not be adding any players to his squad come the January transfer window.
Should he change his mind, Bleacher Report has scouted three strikers who could add an extra dimension to Chelsea as an attacking force.
The Blues very publicly pursued him for much of the summer, only to miss out on his signature.
United refused to change their stance by insisting he would remain at Old Trafford, and Chelsea were forced to look at other options, namely Samuel Eto'o.
Since that time, Rooney has carried the Premier League champions, who have endured a less-than-impressive start to life under new manager David Moyes. They currently sit ninth in the table, and without Rooney, it could be a lot worse.
He has scored eight league goals in 2013-14, not to mention a further five assists—a stat bettered by no other striker in the Premier League.
Rooney's form has been excellent, and while there is no concrete news regarding negotiations with his contract that expires in 2015, it must be of concern to United that he is approaching a time when his sell-on value will drop significantly should they fail to reach an agreement.
Jose Mourinho seemed to used that tactic just a few months ago, but with just two more transfer windows remaining before Rooney is free to negotiate terms with another club, regardless of United's wishes, perhaps now is a time when he can put his powers of persuasion to good use.
Rooney is too good a player for Chelsea not to make another attempt in recruiting him. And with the offer of a potential title challenge before him ahead of United's ongoing problems, it could be a welcome offer for the Englishman.
He's experiencing his best form in a long while, and while he may be ineligible for the latter stages of the Champions League, Chelsea shouldn't be deterred, as Premier League glory will be a greater possibility with Rooney among their number.
Speaking of in-form strikers, there aren't many in Europe who have proved more deadly than Diego Costa this season.
When Radamel Falcao departed for Monaco in the summer, the concern was Atletico Madrid would struggle to sustain their impressive form and progress under Diego Simeone.
It's been rather the contrary, though, with Diego Costa firing them to second in La Liga.
The Brazilian-cum-Spaniard already has 15 goals to his name in the league alone this season, and the goals continue to flow.
In the absence of Falcao, he has blossomed and can now rank himself among the Continent's finest attacking talents.
Prising him away from Atletico will involve a substantial transfer fee. According to the Express, it will be a relative bargain of £20 million come the end of the season due to a contract clause, but until then, Atletico will be demanding a much bigger reward for his services.
If current form is anything to go by, he would be worth the risk. Although, like Wayne Rooney, Diego Costa is ineligible for the latter stages of the Champions League on account of already featuring for his current employers.
The winter transfer window has a reputation for clubs making impulsive buys—purchasing players who offer nothing more than a short-term solution to a team's problems.
Right now, Chelsea need goals and plenty of them if they are to chase down Arsenal's lead at the top of the table.
In Italy, there aren't many strikers hotter than Giuseppe Rossi right now.
The Fiorentina—and former Manchester United—ace has fired home 12 goals in 15 Serie A appearances this term, proving he has recovered from his injury troubles of the past.
Not only that, but his goals also account for 60 per cent of those scored by Vincenzo Montella's team and are a big reason for them sitting fifth in the league table. He is becoming vital to his club and, as such, is impacting games in a way he never has throughout his career.
What's more, Rossi is eligible for Champions League participation on account of Fiorentina not featuring in this year's competition, meaning he will be free to compete in any one of the competitions Chelsea will remain in come the new year.
Rossi's form in Serie A has been impressive, and at 26, he is beginning to enter his prime.
Could he be Chelsea's solution for their problems up front? He may not carry the profile of the many other players who will be linked with the club in the coming weeks, but there is no denying his record in 2013-14 stands up.
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