A lot of hype has surrounded Diego Costa recently and his dominance on the pitch almost makes you forget that Chelsea have other quality strikers available in reserve. As well as club legend Didier Drogba providing backup to the big Spanish forward, Frenchman Loic Remy is also another option for Mourinho to turn to in Costa’s absence.
Remy has been a massive hit in the Premier League since joining Queens Park Rangers from French club Marseille in 2013. Since then, he has scored goals for the R’s and enjoyed a very productive loan spell at Newcastle United in the 2013/14 season, netting 14 times in 26 appearances for the Tyneside outfit.
It’s no surprise that Remy has not been given much first team football at Chelsea due to the form of Diego Costa. However, against Manchester City, the French forward looked like he had been playing week-in, week-out for the Blues, latching on to a perfectly weighted cross to give his side the lead.
It was this performance that showed just how valuable Remy can be for a club like Chelsea. The Frenchman has shown that he can find the back of the net at every team he’s played for. He has always been a natural finisher, with many comparing his playing style to the brilliance of French legend Thierry Henry.
Compared to other top teams in the league, there aren’t many that have a second striker of Remy’s ability. You could argue that Manchester City’s recent addition of Wilfried Bony is a better attacking option than the Frenchman, but Chelsea paid nearly half the £28m City spent on their second striker. Manchester United have quality attacking options up front as well, but when Remy has played, he has looked a lot sharper than the likes of Falcao and van Persie. It seems that the former QPR man is desperate to make an impression when given the chance.
These chances have been limited so far this season, however. Remy has only started two Premier League games for the Blues and has appeared just ten times in the league so far this season. He has also suffered with a recurring groin injury that has kept him out of action for a number of games. Therefore, his return of three goals is actually quite a good one, considering he has been severely limited in terms of minutes on the pitch.
Jose Mourinho must value the impact of his second striker, but it remains to be seen just how long Remy will stay put at a club where he’s unlikely to achieve first team football. According to Sky Spots, Arsenal also wanted to sign Remy last summer, only for Chelsea’s interest leading them to to opt for Danny Welbeck.
Come the end of the season, if Remy’s appearances do not increase, it would be no surprise to see him leave Stamford Bridge. Joining Chelsea was not necessarily a mistake as there remains the very real possibility that Remy could be a Premier League champion at the end of the season. The Blues are also one of the stronger teams left in the Champions League, and there is every chance the Frenchman will end the season with some silverware.
However, at 28-years-old, the striker will recognise that he is entering the peak years of his career and there will be a hunger to play on a regular basis. The exits of Andre Schurrle and Mohammed Salah may allow Remy the opportunity to play more games out wide for the club, where his pace and skill allow him to excel.
Although his move to Chelsea was an understandable one, there is no doubt that game time is the real issue for Remy at the moment. For Mourinho, he remains an excellent option in the Chelsea attack, and in Costa’s current absence, Remy has more than enough ability to step up to the plate.
There is no doubt that the forward has the talent to play for a team like Chelsea, but is his talent being wasted at the club? Moving to a team with a player like Diego Costa dominating the forward line was always going to be a risk but Remy’s ability means that he cannot contemplate staying for much longer if his opportunities at Chelsea remain as limited.