4 goals, 4 assists in 8 starts – This PL striker could be a short-term solution for Chelsea’s goalscoring woes

Ashley Barnes

Why Ashley Barnes could act as a short-term solution for Chelsea’s goalscoring woes

Chelsea are reportedly interested in a shock January move for Burnley forward Ashley Barnes. The Clarets frontman has occupied a very active role on the field this season and Antonio Conte is understandably keen on wanting to bolster his attacking forces. The Blues have been linked to quite a few names this time and Barnes is the latest to be the added to that list. There is most definitely a need for a new forward at Stamford Bridge but is the 28-year-old the right choice?

Having made 26 appearances across competitions for Burnley this season, Barnes has netted 4 times and has provided 4 assists. Those numbers are not too bad, considering he has been handed only 8 starts in the Premier League. Also, he does boast of experience as well and that could prove to be vital going forward. The player has often displayed excellent skills in the final third and seems like a decent prospect.

However, for Conte to splash out money on purchasing a forward like Barnes seems highly unnecessary since he already has Michy Batshuayi in the team. The treatment meted out to the Belgian has been quite unfair ever since he joined the club.

Earlier, he had to compete with Diego Costa and this season, Alvaro Morata’s arrival has once again restricted him to the bench. Even the Italian manager seems to prefer not playing him as we have seen on several occasions this season.

Despite all these setbacks, Batshuayi has managed to score 4 goals and provide a solitary assist this season. In fact, he spent just 476 minutes on the field and has contributed almost as much as Barnes, even though the latter has spent 1079 playing minutes, which is more than double of what Batshuayi has received.

Why Conte does not trust the 24-year-old enough is a question on the minds of a lot of people but there seems to be no answer to that. The player might even be sent out on loan either this January or next summer, thus creating a greater void for Conte to fill.

If that did happen, signing Barnes might be the right thing to do. Batshuayi’s lack of game time has come as a shock to many since the towering forward clearly does not lack talent. However, if he were to exit Stamford Bridge, only then will a move for the Clarets frontman make sense. He would certainly prove to be a relatively cheaper alternative and would act as a short-term solution to Chelsea’s troubles in the front.

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