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WHO’S NEXT UP FRONT FOR THE CURSE OF THE BLUES?

It’s become a regular topic for discussion that the role of Chelsea No 9 might – just might – be cursed.  With the transfer window still ajar, the question remains: Who will Teenage Thomas Ninja Tuchel sign to play in the centre-forward position for the Blues? Or more to the point, which self-respecting, overpaid fool player in their right mind would take it?

LU-KAK-U

This summer saw Romelu Lukaku laughed out – sorry, loaned out – of Stamford Bridge for managing eight goals in one season and seven touches in one game. The seventh most expensive footballer proving the number seven is far from lucky.

Perhaps more embarrassing for Chelsea, is the common knowledge rumour that Tuchel’s compatriot, Timo Werner, has actually asked for a route out following a dismal stint at the club. After all, he had more success getting himself tripped in the box than getting himself on the scoresheet. His quality diving even saw opposition defenders nickname him Timo Daley. So, is the Chelsea No 9 shirt a poisoned chalice?

WERNER – “THE PLACE IS A DIVE ANYWAYS”

Ever since the mid-nineties and Tony Cascarino, there has been talk of strikers with great records in other shirts, donning the Stamford Bridge blue and watching their talent slip through their twinkle-toes. The lanky Irishman was first to feel the darkness, having scored for fun at clubs like Millwall, Gillingham and Aston Villa before heading the line at Chelsea – where injuries meant he managed only 8 goals in 40 games over two years. 

TORRES – FROM EL NINO TO EL NINOGOALS

More recently, flagship signing Fernando Torres fell under the curse. Having scored buckets of goals in red, the Spaniard went to missing sitters with a host of banjos in blue. It has been said that that switch was the quickest turn he made in his whole time at Chelsea. His scoring records at Anfield and Stamford Bridge are markedly different. 

65 goals for Liverpool in just 102 games (66.3%) compared to 110 outings and only 20 goals in West London (22%). Chelsea fans were unhappy and, after he heard the drums, Fernando left Stamford Bridge. Other high-grade low-return scorers have included Radamel ‘Fail’cao, (1 goal in 10 games), Gon-Missing Higuain (5 in 14) and, who could forget Alvaro Mor-or-Less-ata (15 in 47)? With a big hole upfront, it’s not surprising that Thomas the Tuchel Engine is making a hole in the post-Abramovich coffers.

What is surprising is that Tuchel is not looking to replace either of his departing No 9s. Neither the Belgian Bull nor ‘Turbo’ Timo. Rather, it seems, Tuchel’s first priority has proved to be – and always was apparently – Raheem Sterling. Despite an unnerving resemblance to Werner in regularly finding himself upended by defenders’ outstretched legs, Sterling is a winger. He’s certainly not a centre-forward.

CAN STERLING CASH IN UP FRONT?

Proof if ever it was needed that, this season, Tuchel’s Chelsea will be playing with a false 9 instead of a shit one.

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