Chelsea urged to sign £100m striker instead of ‘short-term’ Karim Benzema | Football

Brighton are understood to be demanding in excess of £100m for Evan Ferguson (Getty)

Chelsea should sign Brighton striker Evan Ferguson ahead of Karim Benzema, according to Pat Nevin.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side are seeking a new striker in the January transfer window and are among the clubs who have been linked with Ivan Toney.

However, Brentford are demanding an £80 million fee for the 27-year-old, who scored 20 goals in the Premier League last season.

Benzema, meanwhile, is already looking to leave the Saudi Pro League after less than a year at Al-Ittihad and the former Real Madrid striker has been tipped to join either Chelsea or Arsenal as a short-term solution.

But Nevin believes Chelsea should instead target a move for Ferguson, who has scored 16 goals in 50 appearances for Brighton since his first-team breakthrough in 2021.

‘How many times have Chelsea gone down that route of signing an experienced striker?’ Nevin told told OCB Scores.

‘You think of the certain strikers that Chelsea have signed in the latter stages of their career, the likes of Shevchenko, I could go through a number of them.

Al-Ittihad striker Karim Benzema

Karim Benzema is looking to leave Al-Ittihad in the January transfer window (Getty)

‘They are all brilliant but very few of them scored a lot of goals for the club.

‘On the other hand, if you are creating a number of chances which Chelsea are, maybe you just need someone who can put the ball in the net.

‘It’s such a short-termist thing and it’s so against what the ethos has been from the club.

‘It would be surprising but does it mean it won’t happen? Absolutely not.

‘It would be interesting but Evan Ferguson would be the more obvious one to go for.

‘If you’re going down the route of signing a young striker, Ferguson would be the one I would look at.

‘Someone is needed upfront because when we’re asking Cole Palmer, Chelsea’s best player, to play upfront with his back to goal, of course he can do it but you’re putting your best player out of position.’

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