CHELSEA IN SHOCK MOVE FOR DZEKO
Chelsea’s pursuit of a striker this month just got more interesting as they turn their attention to Roma’s former Manchester City forward Edin Dzeko.
The Stamford Bridge club’s bid to sign West Ham’s Andy Carroll for £20million fell through on Thursday night after the striker was ruled out for four weeks with an ankle injury.
The Blues may seek an alternative spearhead and are weighing up a £40m double swoop for experienced Dzeko, who scored twice for Roma against Chelsea in the Champions League in October, and his team-mate Emerson Palmieri, the left back.
Roma would prefer not to sell Dzeko this month but the Premier League club are willing to offer Michy Batshuayi to the Italians on loan as part of the deal.
Dzeko would be ineligible to play in the Champions League should he head to west London, having played in the competition with Roma this season.
The 31-year-old Bosnian does, however, have vital Premier League experience, spending five seasons at City where he won two league titles and one FA Cup.
Roma want a replacement in place should they part ways with Dzeko and if Batshuayi rejects them, they may turn their attention to Daniel Sturridge.
But Liverpool are not keen on the out-of-favour forward leaving on loan, and have already rejected interest from Sevilla and Inter Milan.
Chelsea, meanwhile, are also discussing Peter Crouch and Fernando Llorente, while Crystal Palace’s out-of-form Christian Benteke is another target.
Stoke will not let Crouch go out on loan, and would also need a replacement in place before letting him leave the bet365 Stadium.
But their pursuit of West Ham striker Carroll appears to be unravelling after the former Liverpool man suffered yet another injury setback.
Reports understands the two clubs had agreed a deal — without the knowledge of David Moyes — for Carroll to move to Stamford Bridge on loan. The deal would have gone through on the promise that Carroll would be sold in the summer and Moyes would be given the money to spend now.
But the potential transfer could now be off the cards, and it is believed there is a possibility the striker could even require surgery. Should Carroll need to go under the knife, he could face up to four months out.