Will Michy Batshuayi be a success at Chelsea?

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Scoring 17 goals in the French Ligue 1 can be interpreted in a few different ways.

On one hand, it is a highly impressive total from a promising 22-year-old who carried a poor, 13th placed Marseille side. But then there's also the argument that it is only the French league.

Anthony Martial only scored nine league goals the season before he joined Manchester United and look at what a revelation he turned out to be. Many people doubted him, but it is fair to say he proved them completely wrong.


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No one has particularly doubted Michy Batshuayi, but that doesn't mean to say that it will definitely work out. Especially once you consider Chelsea's recent track record of signing strikers with big reputations who turn out to be failures (Fernando Torres, Radamel Falcao, Alexandre Pato)

From simply looking at Batshuayi's build, it seems as if he would fit right into the Premier League. He's relatively tall (5"11), fast and strong. Many people have even compared him to Chelsea legend Didier Drogba. With these physical attributes, added to the fact that he is a lethal finisher and has a good leap on him, he could easily turn out to be a success at Stamford Bridge.

The fact that the French League is so far behind the Premier League in terms of quality suggests that there isn't a guarantee he will translate his form in France into the Premier League for the Blues.

It could be argued that the following factors balance out: last season in France he was playing in a poor team which lacked creativity in a league not as strong as his new destination. Although he will be playing in a tougher division, there will also be much more quality around him which will mean more chances are created.

Even though he was almost absent last season, Eden Hazard will be one of the many players responsible for creating those opportunities. But that will not be the only benefit of Hazard's presence, the Belgian connection (with Thibaut Courtois as well of course) will also help.

Having players around him who are also Belgian, and whom he would've spent over a month with in the summer, can only help him to settle in and hit the ground running. We may have even seen a glimpse of what's to come when Hazard assisted Batshuayi for his first goal at Euro 2016 in Belgium's 4-0 win over Hungary in the second round.

One thing that could hold Batshuayi back next season could be the fact that they already have Diego Costa in their ranks, who is likely to remain the first choice striker and could leave the Belgian deprived of minutes on the pitch. Also, with no European football for Chelsea next season, game time for Batshuayi could be even more restricted.

On the other hand, we may see new boss Antonio Conte adopt a similar 3-5-2 formation with Chelsea next season to what he is successfully using with Italy at the Euros. This system includes two strikers and Batshuayi will be expected to part of that team.

Even if Conte goes with one striker, the competition the 22-year-old will provide Costa can only be good for the squad but the young Belgian will need to work extremely hard to force his way into the starting eleven.

Maybe 17 goals in the French Ligue 1 isn't reliable. Perhaps Chelsea haven't got the best record of signing strikers in recent years. But the strengths Batshuayi possesses certainly demonstrates a striker who not only will be able to live up to the physical demands of the Premier League, but also has the quality to be a prolific striker year-in-year-out.

The success of fellow Belgian strikers who have also come to the Premier League shows that this one could definitely work out for Chelsea. He might not score another 17 goals next season, or maybe even the for the subsequent two years, but at 22, the potential is certainly there.

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Ligue 1
Premier League
Belgium Football
Eden Hazard

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