Chelsea are keen on signing West Ham’s £12 million summer signing Enner Valencia, according to the Daily Telegraph.
There has been speculation that Jose Mourinho is interested in both Valencia and Hammers top scorer Diafra Sakho, although he is said to be particularly fond of the Ecuadorian and could be weighing up a move.
West Ham would want more than what they paid for him in the summer and it is hard to see them letting the 25-year-old leave so soon after arriving.
Valencia has not been able to keep up his phenomenal goalscoring record since his switch to the Premier League – with Mexican side Pachuca he scored 18 times in just 23 games – however he has, despite only scoring four goals for the Hammers, shown glimpses of great quality and versatility.
Sam Allardyce has often deployed the South American striker in a three playing behind the front-man, usually out wide, and Valencia always gives his all despite sometimes struggling to make an impact from that position.
When he is moved more centrally, though, his pace and direct running wreaks havoc on defences as he ensures he’s a constant menace. His versatility and endeavour are perhaps the main reasons as to why Mourinho sees him as an attractive target, but he would still prove a bit of a gamble for the ‘Special One’.
This is all merely speculation and it is hard to see Chelsea making a concrete offer, with many suggesting that they could use out of favour Loic Remy as bait. Remy has struggled to make his mark at Stamford Bridge and isn’t as versatile as Valencia, however he is an incredible finisher and could be a tempting prospect should he be offered to the Hammers in a player plus cash deal.
STICK OR TWIST?
For me, if Chelsea were to come in for the striker West Ham should sell either for a big fee or in a switch with Remy.
Allardyce signed Valencia in the summer for his goals and he isn’t providing enough of them at present, whereas Remy is a clinical finisher and proven in the Premier League.
Furthermore, the Ecuador international would surely want to move should a big club come in for him and although the Hammers won’t want to be seen as a feeder club that sell off their best players, in this particular case it would make sense.