Why Chelsea should sign Dries Mertens in the summer
According to a report in The Times, Napoli forward Dries Mertens has hinted that he could leave Napoli in the summer and join his former boss Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea. The Belgian said that he would leave the Italian side once his contract expires in the summer of 2020 and England is an option for the future (h/t The Times).
The pair of Sarri and Mertens worked together in Naples and did some great things. The former is now thought to be interested in bringing the latter to Stamford Bridge during the next summer transfer window.
Here’s why the Blues should sign the forward whenever possible before any potential suitor takes him away:
Mertens’ quality will be immense for the team
Chelsea have made a great start to life under Sarri and are in a good position in the league to at least fight for a top-four spot. They were fantastic last week in the win over defending champions Manchester City to blow the title race open. However, the fact that the Blues lack a clinical striker up front could toughen their aim to challenge for the highest echelon.
Depending on midfielders and Eden Hazard to create and score won’t help the team win games on the bounce for a considerable amount of time. Hence, the club’s aim should be to finish in the top four, secure Champions league football and attract the big talents next summer.
This is where they can sign someone like Mertens, who is a quality forward. The Belgian can play as a false nine, a No. 10 and on either wing if required. He can score goals, create chances, link up with his national teammate Hazard and form a deadly partnership up front. He has netted seven goals and supplied four assists in 14 Serie A appearances.
Having worked with Sarri before, the Napoli man would have an idea as to how the Italian wants to play. Hence, it won’t take much time for the 31-year-old to settle into the playing system at Chelsea.
From the Blues’ viewpoint, an attacking leader like Mertens would be a massive upgrade to what they have right now. For this transfer to happen, the team needs to ensure they finish in the top four this season and have Champions League football to offer to the player.