Mauricio Pochettino names 18-year-old Chelsea star as striker option after Armando Broja exit | Football

Washington joined Chelsea in the summer (Picture: Getty)

Mauricio Pochettino says Chelsea have three options up front having allowed Armando Broja to leave the club without signing a replacement.

The Albania international made the short journey up the road to join Fulham on loan until the end of the season.

Nicolas Jackson, just back from the Africa Cup of Nations following Senegal’s elimination, has been Chelsea’s only recognised centre forward option for much of the season, scoring eight times this term.

Christopher Nkunku, prolific at RB Leipzig, missed the first four months of the season with a knee injury with a hip problem hampering him in January.

Speaking at a press conference ahead of Saturday’s meeting with Wolves, Pochettino also named Deivid Washington as another viable option.

The 18-year-old joined Chelsea from Brazilian side Santos in a deal worth £17.2million last summer but has made just two senior appearances this season.

Asked why Chelsea let Broja leave, Pochettino said: ‘It is a very good opportunity for him to play maybe more. It’s a good move for him and he can take the opportunity to play more.

Armando Broja

Broja completed a loan move to Fulham on deadline day (Picture: Getty)

‘It is important to recover Christoph [Nkunku] and it is important for Nico Jackson to arrive. Also, sometimes we forget, but Deivid Washington is here with us. The options we have up front are enough.’

Jackson meanwhile was expected to arrive back in England ahead of Chelsea’s game against Liverpool on Wednesday only for Senegal to refuse to allow players to fly back to their respective clubs the previous day.

The former Villarreal star was back in Chelsea training on Friday with Pochettino hopeful he can make the squad for the visit of Wolves.

 ‘We need to assess Nico; today was his first training session with us,’ the Chelsea boss said.

‘He didn’t play too much [at the Africa Cup of Nations], but he was one month away.

‘That is why we need to assess him really well and not take risks. If nothing happens, for sure he will be involved in the squad.’


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