This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
According to the The Daily Star, Chelsea are interested in signing Wigan’s Joe Gelhardt.
The 17-year-old is highly rated by the Latics and his talent has been recognised by the likes of Manchester United and Liverpool, who are amongst five other Premier League clubs believed to be interested in the striker.
A possible fee could amount to more than that with add-ons, but for Chelsea it would still present a bit of a bargain as they are believed to have £150m ready to spend.
A possible January move rests on the outcome of their appeal against the transfer ban. That decision will be made on November 20, but if they get the green light it is possible they will line up a move.
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It would be an interesting step for Chelsea to take, but it is a transfer which may be conducted simply because of the mounting interest in the striker.
He is valued by his manager Paul Cook, who said he has a “special talent” to create space in tight areas, and against defences which often sit back against Chelsea that could be vital.
Having proved this season that young players such as Tammy Abraham, Reece James and Mason Mount won’t only get opportunities at Chelsea, but will flourish, the Blues may stand the best chance of luring him away from Wigan. In Lampard, Gelhardt may also see a manager who would be able to improve his game.
His goal against Hull this term showed his finishing capability, and in learning from the likes of Tammy Abraham and Olivier Giroud he may be able to get in scoring positions more often.
£5m would be a bit of a bargain if he continues his current rate of progression, so it would certainly be a wise choice to make him the first signing of the post-transfer ban.