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Chelsea Transfer News: Alvaro Morata Monitored Amid Arsenal, Real Madrid Rumours

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistSeptember 30, 2016

MADRID, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 21:  Alvaro Morata of Real Madrid looks on prior to the La Liga match between Real Madrid CF and Villarreal CF at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on September 21, 2016 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by fotopress/Getty Images)
fotopress/Getty Images

Chelsea could reportedly go head-to-head with Arsenal in January to sign Alvaro Morata if the Spanish forward continues to play second fiddle to Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid.

According to the Sun's Warren Haughton, Chelsea and the Gunners are on "red alert to swoop" for Morata as he has returned to a role on the bench at the Santiago Bernabeu following Los Blancos buying him back from Juventus in the summer.

Real paid £23 million to re-sign Morata, 23, from the Italian giants, but manager Zinedine Zidane has only started him once in the club's last five outings, predominantly preferring Benzema, Bale and Ronaldo in the front three. 

At Chelsea, Morata would likely get a much bigger role alongside Diego Costa, as Blues manager Antonio Conte is historically fond of playing two forwards up front, per Bleacher Report's Sam Tighe:

Morata revealed that former Juventus boss Conte was interested in signing him in the summer, so much as to offer to make him the most expensive Spaniard ever, per Sport Bild (via ESPN FC's Liam Twomey): "Chelsea showed the most interest [in me]. [Conte] had already signed me for Juventus. And it was a very good offer this time. I would have been the most expensive Spanish player ever."

Should he continue to warm the bench at Real until the winter and Chelsea move in with a similarly attractive offer, the Blues might persuade the Madrid giants to let Morata leave for Stamford Bridge.

If they face competition from Arsenal, it could be a tougher task, as the Gunners could still do with a better alternative as their No. 1 striker than Olivier Giroud.

Conte's previous relationship with Morata could prove telling, though. 

Morata was not overly prolific at Juventus—netting 15 times in 63 Serie A appearances—but he had a knack for scoring very important goals, per Squawka:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Alvaro Morata scored in both legs of the 2014/15 Champions League SF for Juventus, as well as the final itself. https://t.co/OYmGDcigGz

Chelsea could really do with a big-game player of Morata's talent and, given his youth, he would likely improve his scoring rate under Conte with greater experience.   

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