Long-standing rumours surrounding Chelsea’s interest in barrel-bodied Brazilian Hulk of Zenit St Petersburg have been give fresh impetus after Sandor Varga, an agent linked to the player, suggested a summer move is on the cards.
‘Despite the huge transfer fee required to sign Hulk, don’t rule out that he will move to one of the top clubs in Europe this summer’, Varga is widely reported as telling Russian paper Izvestia.
It’s understood that the Russians would demand a sky-high fee in the region of £40m for their man but, while it might be major paper, it could well rate sound business for the Stamford Bridge outfit.
Hulk, 28/1 in the scorer betting for the World Cup later this year in his homeland, has been in superb form this term both as a centre-forward and as a right-winger.
According to whoscored.com the 27-year-old has notched six times in nine games as a line-leading number nine, laying on two more for his colleagues across the Champions League and Russian Premier League in 2013/14.
Such form is a marked upgrade on Chelsea’s underwhelming line-leaders and would make him an exciting, albeit costly solution to their lack of fireworks up front this term.
Yet, his incendiary form on the flank, where he’s he hit the onion bag a further six times and served up four goals for his teammates in 15 starts, means he might just walk straight into the XI at the Bridge as right-sided forward.
Roman Abramovich has already forked out £59.6m on right-sided players Willian, Andre Schurrle and recent newcomer Mohammed Salah this term.
However, the latter pair in particular have been far from consistent starters, meaning the outlay on Hulk could be largely offset by selling them on in the summer.
Chelsea must sell as they sign to avoid falling foul of ever more stringent financial fair play rules making a versatile and extremely gifted forward like Hulk worth his £40m fee.