The pending arrival of Michy Batshuayi will presumably lead to Chelsea shelve their rumoured pursuit of Everton striker Romelu Lukaku.
Universal expectation dictates the Toffees talisman will depart Goodison Park this summer after the Merseysiders endured a second substandard season in succession and a return to Stamford Bridge was thought to be one of his options.
But Batshuayi’s £33m switch to west London, which will make him the first arrival of the Antonio Conte era, will almost certainly kill any aspirations Lukaku may have had about re-joining his former club.
However, that doesn’t mean the Belgian behemoth won’t be moving to London this summer.
Chelsea’s withdrawal from Lukaku contention has created an opportunity for Arsenal to end their chronicled search for a striker.
The Gunners’ failed £20m bid for Jamie Vardy, a 29-year-old who has savoured just one elite season of top-level football, demonstrates their willingness to pay a premium for a line-leader with a proven scoring record in the Premier League and the Everton sharpshooter is undoubtedly that.
Last season the 23-year-old took his goal tally in England’s top flight to 60. In doing so he became the fourth youngest player to cross the 50-strike threshold in a division that has so frequently savaged the reputations of burgeoning marksmen imported from abroad in the past.
Few frontmen on planet Earth can rival Lukaku’s pedigree and, while he’s sure to cost a significant amount more than what Arsenal stumped up to activate Vardy’s release clause, he’s guaranteed to deliver the goods for years to come.
After representing Chelsea, West Bromwich Albion and Everton, as well as Anderlecht in his homeland, the Belgium international has established himself as capable of flourishing in a variety of systems and styles in teams with contrasting objectives.
Arsenal offer Champions League football and silver service provided by a legion of skilled chance-conjurers; it’s a dream deal for both parties.
As for Everton, they may lose their best player, but they’re sure to be substantially compensated in exchange for his services.
More importantly, the Toffees were taught a lesson in how refusing a developing prodigy to a transfer against his will can have a dramatic impact on form through the John Stones debacle of last summer.
With this fresh in the memory, they’d be foolish to deny Lukaku the chance to leave if an enormously-inflated bid lands in their in tray.