Every so often, a striker will come to the fold that will turn heads and have fans drooling at the goals they are scoring. One of those is, of course, Napoli front-man Edinson Cavani. The Uruguayan has, to date, netted an astonishing 80 goals in 109 games for the Serie A side since his 2010 move from Palermo.
Unsurprisingly, interest is believed to be high in Cavani, with a host of Europe’s heavyweights believed to be taking a keen interest in the 25-year-old. Reports over the summer suggested that Chelsea and Manchester City were both keen on the Partenopei striker, but any move failed to materialise.
However, after netting 14 goals already this season, making up eight of Napoli’s 20 as the Italian outfit find themselves third in Serie A, clubs are again beginning to take note in Cavani’s exploits.
While City are overly stocked on strikers, with Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez, Edin Dzeko and Mario Balotelli all available to manager Roberto Mancini, Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo could certainly utilise to talismanic front-man right about now.
While the Italian boasts an impressive arsenal of attacking talent in Eden Hazard, Oscar and Juan Mata, question marks still loom over the head of Fernando Torres and his future at Stamford Bridge.
The Spaniard has endured a mixed start to the season, netting seven goals in 18 games for the Blues, but was infamously sent off for diving during the highly charged 3-2 defeat to Manchester United last month.
Regardless of the form of Victor Moses and Daniel Sturridge, and Romelu Lukaku currently on loan with West Bromwich Albion, until the transfer window reopens Torres remains the only recognised striker that Di Matteo can call upon.
Upon the departure of Didier Drogba over the summer, the 28-year-old was expected to fulfil the role that the powerful Ivorian undertook, last season especially. However, with Torres somewhat failing to live up to expectations, there is certainly a need to add another front-man to the squad.
While Chelsea have been linked with a big money move for Atletico Madrid front-man Radamel Falcao, it has somewhat seen Cavani’s exploits fly under the radar. However, with Napoli embroiled in a match fixing scandal, it could well see the Uruguayan move on to pastures new.
If the Serie A side suffer a similar fate to that of Juventus as a result of the Calciopoli in 2006, it would be no surprise to see Cavani look to leave. Yet, regardless of any perilous position Napoli find themselves in, they’ll still demand top dollar for their prized asset, and rightly so.
At present, this is a player who is averaging a goal a game and, at the time of writing, hasn’t shown any indication that he is ready to leave the Serie A side. Nevertheless, his work rate and capability in front of goal means he is certainly hot property within the game.
However, it shouldn’t be just Chelsea that remain in the hunt for him. London rivals Arsenal are one team that should be showing an interest in Cavani. The departure of Robin van Persie, regardless of one fans will say, is still being felt at the Emirates Stadium.
Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski both aren’t like-for-like replacements for the Dutchman, as evidenced by their respective performances this season. Cavani, on the other, bears striking similarities to Van Persie and would be far better suited to fulfilling the role left by the now Manchester United man.
However, the only setback for Arsenal would undoubtedly be the price. Manager Arsene Wenger is often reluctant to dip into his pocket to spend big on a player, regardless of the money splashed on Giroud, Podolski and Santi Cazorla.
Yet, with Napoli likely to command a fee of around €50m, chances are the Frenchman would swerve Cavani, especially if Chelsea were to firm up their interest. Either way, El Matador is one player that both London giants could certainly put to good use.