As another transfer window approaches, another transfer rumor linking Chelsea FC with a high-priced, big name striker has surfaced among British media. FC Porto forward Jackson Martinez has been linked, not for the first time, with the west London club for a fee of around £30 million.
The Colombian marksman has been a revelation at the Portuguese side ever since his move to Porto in 2012. Martinez has scored eight times in 10 games for his club in the Primeira Liga this season, while amassing a phenomenal 26 goals in 30 league games last season.
It is alleged that if Porto does not progress to the round of 16 in the Champions League, they will look to offload their star striker in January. Although Porto’s valuation of the player is £35 million, Chelsea is hoping to land Martinez for slightly cheaper.
There is no question that Martinez is a talented goal scorer, but is he worth the money?
One factor is age. It is statistically proven that footballers tend to peak around age 27, the age Martinez is now. That would mean that the Blues could get about two to three years of top form from him before age will begin to play a factor. For £30 million, Chelsea has done much worse.
Another factor to look at is his competition at Chelsea. Although Fernando Torres had a rough start at Stamford Bridge, he has since regained confidence and has shown signs of his former self. Samuel Eto’o came in this year as part of the Willian transfer and has played decently, but like Torres, is nowhere near his heyday. Demba Ba, well, I’ve said his name and now we can move past it.
The major point to look at is the future star of the Bridge, Romelu Lukaku, a player many are placing their hopes on to lead the line for Chelsea in years to come. Lukaku is fantastic, and at only 20 years of age, has plenty of time to improve – although, he has already been first-choice for Everton this year, and for West Brom last year. Yet, it seems that Chelsea is hoping for him to become Didier Drogba before he becomes their standalone number nine.
This leaves room for a few good years at Chelsea for Martinez. The player is powerful in the box and can score with both feet. He is a cheaper option than Falcao, and is powerful enough to quickly adapt to the English game. The significant downside is that he is cup-tied, as he has already played in the Champions League for Porto this season.
All-in-all, Chelsea would do themselves a disservice if they didn’t at least attempt to sign Martinez.