Alan Shearer insisted that Romelu Lukaku could be the deciding factor for Chelsea in the Premier League title race.
Writing in his column for the BBC, Shearer was sure that Lukaku was going to play a huge role in whatever the Blues achieved this season.
The Belgian was officially unwrapped as a Chelsea player yesterday, with his price tag reading a whopping £97.5m (BBC).
But the Stamford Bridge hierarchy were willing to fork out a club-record fee for the striker’s services, such is their emphasis on clinching the league back off Manchester City.
He is the man with the goal-den touch; 30 in 44 appearances for Inter Milan last year, to be precise.
Shearer sets out his stall
If Thomas Tuchel can keep Lukaku fit and firing on all cylinders, then Shearer felt the pendulum could be swinging in Chelsea’s favour.
“He is going to be a huge signing for them,” said the Newcastle United legend.
“Put it this way, he can be the difference between them being champions or not. That’s how important he is.
“We are talking about one of the best strikers in the world – that’s how good Lukaku is.
“At 28, he is at his peak and I think he has improved a lot since he left Manchester United for Inter Milan in 2019 because of the experience he has had in Serie A.
“He is a better all-round player now, plus he is hungry and has got something to prove at Chelsea after he was allowed to leave when he was younger.
“Lukaku is arriving at a club that has everything else in place to win the title, although there are a few sides who will have something to say about that.”
The final piece
All the elements are there for Chelsea to have a proper stab at City’s kingdom.
Their defensive record under Tuchel speaks for itself.
Creating chances hasn’t been an issue either, thanks to the array of attacking talent on disposal.
Formation-wise, the Blues seem to have sorted themselves out, after constantly chopping and changing under Frank Lampard.
But what they’ve been crying out for is a traditional, elite, proven no.9.
Step forward Lukaku.