'Top, top player': Keown says Chelsea have a brilliant player in their ranks, who's only made one appearance so far

Martin Keown was blown away last night by the performance of Southampton forward Armando Broja, who’s an exciting talent in the Chelsea ranks.

Broja, 20, is a Blues-owned striker that’s spending the season out on loan with Southampton.

The youngster scored again yesterday for the Saints in a 3-1 win against West Ham in the FA Cup fifth round.

He showed tremendous individual skill to dribble from a wide role into a central position in the box, which was capped off by a superb finish.

The Albania international now has nine goals in 27 Southampton appearances this campaign, so is putting forward a great case for himself to be introduced to Thomas Tuchel’s first-team squad next season at Stamford Bridge.

Broja’s made one competitive senior appearance for Chelsea so far, but there are so many in the Blues fanbase that are banging the drum about his success.

Keown has waxed lyrical about the Blues loanee after his latest display.

“Pace, power and then the finesse at the end of it… Look at that for a cultured finish,” Keown told BBC Sport.

“This is a player. Top, top player. Going back to Chelsea, clearly they want him back after this. So impressive.”

Incidentally, Paul Merson agrees that Broja is destined for a future in the Chelsea team at Stamford Bridge.

Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images

Chelsea own rival for Lukaku

For certain, Broja’s ticking almost every box when it comes to what you want from a Premier League striker.

The hope is Chelsea’s number nine Romelu Lukaku rediscovers his best form and becomes a star in Tuchel’s attack, but in any event he really needs competition for the centre-forward slot next season.

Broja is showing at Southampton his potential to play at the top, looking so mature for someone that doesn’t turn 21 until September.

He’s someone that could be a brilliant rival for Lukaku at the Bridge.

There are definitely shades of ex-Blues striker Diego Costa that fans will love about him.

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A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.