According to reports in the English media, Antonio Conte is eyeing a move for Napoli striker, Dries Mertens in the upcoming transfer window. The Blues boss is keen to add to his attacking options after Morata’s injury last weekend.
The Belgium forward is one of the best players in the Serie A at the moment. In the summer of 2013, he made the move from PSV to Naples for a reported fee of €9.5 million. Dries Mertens started out as a winger, however, he began leading the line after the departure of Higuain at the beginning of last season.
In his first season as a striker, he made 45 appearances across all competitions, scoring 34 goals. Dries Mertens fell just one goal short of the Golden Boot award in the Serie A which was won by Edin Dzeko.
This season, the 30-year old has scored 9 goals in 11 appearances, taking Napoli to the top the Serie A table.
The Belgian’s performances attracted interest from a number of clubs across Europe earlier this summer. However, Mertens decided to commit his future to Napoli by extending his contract until 2020.
According to reports, Dries Mertens’ release clause is set at £25 million. Chelsea are eyeing to match the amount to secure his signature in January.
Currently, Antonio Conte is short of options in the striker department. In the clash against Manchester City, Alvaro Morata limped off due to an injury. Michy Batshuayi is Chelsea’s only option to lead the attack in the upcoming games.
The Italian boss is not confident of the Belgian International’s abilities yet. In order to relieve the pressure on Alvaro Morata, Antonio Conte is set to turn his attention to Dries Mertens in the winter.
Some of Chelsea’s rivals are also interested in the player. Manchester United and Arsenal are closely monitoring Mertens’ situation at Napoli. It will be interesting if Antonio Conte can convince the Belgian to make the move to Stamford Bridge in January.