For the second summer running Roberto Martinez peruses the ‘for rent’ section of the Chelsea squad, seeking a temporary striker whose value he’ll have doubled a year down the line.
Jose Mourinho and Roman Abramovich must’ve come off the phone to the Everton boss dreaming of the dollar they’ll be able to demand for Demba Ba, the latest Blue subject to loan interest from the Toffees.
Romelu Lukaku’s barnstorming campaign at Goodison Park will ensure Chelsea cop more than £20m for a player they don’t deem good enough to cut Colman’s finest and they’ll be hoping Martinez waves the same wand on another of their attacking outcasts.
With the Belgian bulldozer leading their line Everton came perilously close to breaking and entering into the top-four clubhouse and, if they broker the Ba deal, odds of 13/2 about them achieving the feat this time around should appreciate in appeal.
The Senegalese sharpshooter has found opportunities harder to come by than a World Cup match without Neymar in tears at the Bridge, but the small pond is one in which he thrives.
Everton’s lack of line-leading alternatives means the former Newcastle goal machine will be guaranteed the game time that will bolster his confidence and reclaim his mantle as one of the top terrorisers of defences in the land.
In 51 combined league starts for West Ham and Newcastle, the 29-year-old rustled the net an incredibly impressive 36 times and with more experience in the locker than Lukaku, he’d prove an even bigger danger at Everton than the Belgium man.
On the other hand, allowing Ba to abscond borders on madness for Chelsea’s part.
The club appear keen on trimming the forward from their wage bill, but with geriatric Samuel Eto’o on his way, barn door-banjo avoidance specialist Fernando Torres will be the only frontman in their ranks to support inbound Diego Costa, assuming Lukaku seeks pastures new, of course.
It’s taken the devolved Spaniard three-and-a-half seasons to hit 20 goals, while Spazilian Costa has savoured just a solitary campaign of predatory magnificence.
Binning Ba would make new striker shopping a necessity and magnetising a world-class talent would be tough when they were in the knowledge that they’d be playing an ancillary role behind Costa.