Chelsea recently announced the signing of Spanish striker Alvaro Morata from Real Madrid ahead of the 2017/18 Premier League season. The 24-year-old has reportedly put pen to paper for a record transfer fee of £60 million, and becomes Chelsea’s third major signing of the summer, following the arrival of Antonio Rüdiger from Roma and Tiemoué Bakayoko from Monaco.
“I am so happy to be here. It’s an incredible emotion to be part of this big club,” he told the club’s website. “I am looking to work hard, score as many goals as I can and to win as many trophies as possible.”
This will come as music to every Chelsea fan’s ears if he can continue where he left off last year while playing in Spain. Morata’s conversion rate was 27 percent last season, the highest of any striker to score at least ten goals in La Liga in 2016/17. However, the striker was mainly used as a substitute and rarely started for the Spanish Giants. He will have to learn to take on the responsibility and pressure of a starting player if he is to become the number one choice for Chelsea.
Chelsea were back to their best last year under Antonio Conte, after a disappointing 2015/16 season with Jose Mourinho. With the signing of Morata and shrewd recruitment elsewhere, it looks as though Chelsea have made their intentions clear, and will once again be a force in the Premier League when it kicks off in August. They haven’t won consecutive titles since the 2004/05 and 2005/06 seasons and Betsson’s Chelsea odds price up the champions at 67/20 to make it back-to-back triumphs.
Many were surprised with the signing of Morata, as earlier in the transfer window it looked like the Spaniard would be making a move to Old Trafford instead. He was a major target for Mourinho and Manchester United before the Red Devils eventually signed Romelu Lukaku from Everton.
The rushed nature of the deal has some people thinking that this could have been a panicked decision by the London club. It’s no secret that Chelsea’s starting striker Diego Costa has been heavily linked with a move to the Chinese Super League and this may suggest some type of deal is set to happen.
Technical director Michael Emenalo said: “We are delighted to complete Alvaro’s signing and welcome him to the club. We believe he can make a great impact for Chelsea and look forward to seeing him in action.”
“Alvaro has proven class at the highest level and his quality will be a huge asset to Antonio and the squad.”
The 24-year-old recently made his debut for the club in Chelsea’s 3-2 loss to Bayern Munich in Singapore. Morata came on in the 63rd minute and played on the left flank of a frontline that had Michy Batshuayi in the middle and Willian on the right.
Alvaro didn’t have any shots but provided the assist for Chelsea’s second when he flicked on a header from a corner to provide Batshuayi with an easy finish. After the match, Conte admitted that Morata needs time to adapt to Chelsea’s “idea of football” and it will take some time to settle in.
There is always some doubt when a player makes a move to the Premier League from one of the other major competitions in Europe. The fast-paced and physical nature of English football has seen many players struggle at times and Chelsea supporters will be hoping their new signing can become a success for the club.