In Focus: Keita would offer fresh and incisive spark to Chelsea

As reported by Italian outlet, Chelsea have joined the race to sign Lazio forward Keita Balde this summer.

What’s the story?

After losing out on Romelu Lukaku to Manchester United, the Blues are on the hunt for attacking talent they feel can make a difference next season. While the English Premier League title was won, it’s important that the squad is freshened up somewhat to prevent stagnating. With European football also on the cards next term, it’s important there is quality throughout the squad.

One man Antonio Conte is keen on is Lazio man Keita Balde. That’s according to, who say he could cost as much as £26.5m to bring to Stamford Bridge.

While that’s a lot of money it’s perhaps a level of spending below what other attackers cost and Keita doesn’t appear to be any less of a potent option in the final third. It’s also a figure well within the Blues’ spending power.

Good enough for Chelsea?

While it’s always difficult to know whether a player can make the step up to a top four side in England, Keita certainly appears to have as good a chance as any that have arrived at Stamford Bridge.

Deployed in both wide and central positions for the Italian club, he scored 16 goals last term, also contributing three assists.

With pace, excellent dribbling abilities and a real eye for goal, he could add a real fresh spark to Chelsea’s final third that at times has had an over-reliance on one or two players.

At just 22 he has a bright future ahead of him and could be a gamble worth taking.