In Focus: Blues need a finisher to Bridge gap to title rivals
With both Timo Werner and Romelu Lukaku leaving Chelsea in the summer transfer window, Thomas Tuchel must now look elsewhere for a top-class goalscorer.
The Blues wasted chances in the 2-2 draw with Tottenham at the weekend, with Kai Havertz and Mason Mount not displaying a lethal instinct in front of goal.
Ahead of their trip to Leeds on Sunday, we look into how Chelsea can solve their deep-rooted striker issues.
Recruiting the right players
Chelsea cannot afford to repeat their £97.5million mistake with Lukaku, a return of eight Premier League goals for that price is simply not good enough.
The two-time Champions League winners have already spent nearly £170m this summer, but their striker issue still persists.
If Tuchel is keen to dip into the market once more, he must make sure he recruits the right player, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could be that man.
The former Arsenal striker only departed London in January — finding form with Catalan giants Barcelona.
Since his switch to the Camp Nou, Aubameyang has added 13 goals to the 92 he scored in North London.
With a value of around £25m, Chelsea could look to the Gabon international to fill the Lukaku-shaped hole in their frontline.
Aubameyang has a number of key attributes Tuchel admires in a striker, including pace, composure and resilience, and the Blues chief has spoken glowingly of the man he worked with at Borussia Dortmund.
Should he make his way to Stamford Bridge, he could prove to be the missing piece of the puzzle that transforms Chelsea into title contenders.
Make do with what you have
Signing Aubameyang would be a gamble after Mikel Arteta shipped him out over off-the-field issues.
An alternative approach for Chelsea could be to utilise players who have not yet been given an opportunity.
One option available to them is Armando Broja, a talented and aggressive forward who starred for Southampton on loan.
Broja, 20, has made two cameos for the West London side this season, coming off the bench in both Premier League fixtures, but the Albanian striker will be desperate for more game time.
He scored six Premier League goals last season in a Saints side that struggled to a 15th-place finish.
And he has been talked up by the top flight's record goalscorer Alan Shearer.
He said: "As a striker, it’s all about taking chances and scoring goals, so stats like his tell me he can thrive in the Premier League.
"Broja is a young striker with an eye for goal and has a bright future in the Premier League."
What is the answer?
It may unsettle Broja, who has already been denied a move away by Tuchel this summer, if the Blues go down the Aubameyang route.
However, new owner Todd Boehly's philosophy is clearly to win now — this is reflected in the addition of 31-year-old Kalidou Koulibaly and 27-year-old Raheem Sterling.
Therefore, it is probably easier for the club to take the gamble and bring in Aubameyang, even if Barcelona's asking price is a bit steep.
Aubameyang would have a clear desire to make a statement in the Premier League after Arsenal essentially booted him out of the door — it could be a risk worth taking.
Ultimately, Chelsea may not do any more business in the market and Tuchel would have to stick with his current from three of Havertz, Sterling and Mount, or put his faith in Broja.
There is a feeling that without a lethal finisher, their success this season will be limited.
Liverpool and Manchester City have both brought in top talents in Darwin Nunez and Erling Haaland, while Spurs have Harry Kane leading the line — it leaves the Blues short in attack.
The acquisition of in-form Arsenal hitman Gabriel Jesus did not materialise and Chelsea could struggle to keep pace with the frontrunners in a competitive division.
A top-four finish is very much expected but without a focal point in the final third, Blues fans may have to settle for another comfortable season with hopes of another decent run in cup competitions.