Connect in the back of the net

With the January transfer window now open and a number of big Premier League clubs struggling badly, it could be a more active month than usual. Stamford Bridge is likely to see a few comings and goings and it would be a big surprise if the month ends without a new striker in at Chelsea.

One name that has been strongly linked in recent weeks is Jackson Martinez, who hasn’t got off to a great start to his time at Atletico Madrid.

He arrived from Porto in the summer with a big reputation and a big transfer fee but without any experience in a major European league. He has found La Liga significantly tougher than the Portuguese top flight and just three goals in 17 appearances represents little return on a €35 million investment made by the Spaniards.

 

Goal drought

Jackson Martinez hasn’t scored since October and Atleti may already be tempted to cut their losses on the striker, who has struggled to maintain a regular starting berth, if a suitable offer comes in.

The pacey Colombian has the game that would be suited to the Premier League and with the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United struggling for goals and in the market for a striker this month, he will at the very least be on their radars.

Of the two, Stamford Bridge looks the more likely destination with Chelsea desperate for someone to score goals to fire them up the league in the Second half of the season. The Blues have three main strikers on their books although Radamel Falcao and Loic Remy have made just one Premier League start each this season.

 

Shortage of striker options

Falcao has suffered a fresh injury setback and is unlikely to feature for some time yet while Remy is set to be allowed to leave on loan this month with a host of Premier League clubs said to be keen on his signature.

That leaves Diego Costa, who has been booed by his own supporters in recent weeks for his supposed role in the downfall of Jose Mourinho and has looked a shadow of the player that excelled last season.

 

Could be worth a gamble

Jackson Martinez is far from a guaranteed source for goals judging by his struggles at the Vicente Calderon, but could be worth a gamble at least as a short-term signing until the end of the season.

The possibility of a swap deal with Diego Costa returning to Atletico just 18 months after he swapped Madrid for London has also been mooted and it is one that could make sense to all parties.

Atletico are also struggling for a reliable striker and would dearly love to get Costa back given he inspired them to the title and Champions League final in his final season at the club.

 

A change of scenery might be of benefit

A change of scenery might do both Diego Costa and Jackson Martinez some good although neither player would be able to play in the Champions League for their new clubs, which could be the main stumbling block to any deal.

At 29, Jackson Martinez shouldn’t be viewed as the long-term solution to Chelsea’s forward problems but he could be an improvement on what is at the club currently and provided other re-enforcements arrive this month, his signing on a short-term deal would be a welcome boost to Guus Hiddink’s plans for the remainder of the campaign.

 

Written by Mark Sochon

Follow Mark on Twitter @tikitakagol

Check out his brilliant blog on all things La Liga, Tiki-Taka-Gol!

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