Chelsea: £22.5m star finally 'expected to start' vs Crystal Palace

Chelsea manager Graham Potter

Chelsea striker Armando Broja is in line to make his first Blues start against Crystal Palace this weekend, according to journalist Simon Phillips.

The 21-year-old has featured heavily off the bench in recent games but is still waiting to make his full Chelsea debut.

What’s the latest news involving Broja?

Broja returned to Stamford Bridge following his fruitful loan spell at Southampton, where he scored nine goals in all competitions.

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Regardless, the £22.5m-rated frontman has been on the pitch for just 124 minutes of action, with Kai Havertz and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang regularly picked ahead of him.

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But Broja has impressed from the bench, notably in the Premier League games against Southampton and West Ham and the Champions League draw with Salzburg in Graham Potter’s first match in charge.

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As a result, Phillips reckons the youngster will be rewarded with a start when Chelsea make their long-awaited return to Premier League action at Selhurst Park on Saturday.

What did Phillips say about Broja?

He told GIVEMSPORT: “He’s very close, I’m surprised he hasn’t had it yet, but he had a small injury, so I think that held him up a bit.

“I’ve been told that he is expected to get the nod in the next game if all things go well between now and then and I think it’ll probably be ahead of Aubameyang, who still has a broken jaw issue, so I think Broja will start against Crystal Palace.”

Does Broja deserve a start?

Broja will have definitely earned himself as start if he does get the nod from Potter in the London derby.

Not only has the Albania international made a positive impact almost every time he’s come off the bench, but the players currently starting ahead of him aren’t exactly performing at their best.

Aubameyang has looked rusty in his first two appearances following his arrival from Barcelona, lasting just 59 minutes and 66 minutes respectively.

Meanwhile, Havertz, who’s led the line for the majority of the season, has scored once in eight games in all competitions and has been desperately out of form.

With that in mind, there appears to be every chance that Broja will be the man tasked with playing the lone striker role by Potter at Palace.

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