Chelsea Face Fierce Competition In Pursuit Of Bournemouth Ace: What Will He Add To Lampard’s Side?

Update on Aston Villa's pursuit of Josh King who is in action in the photo
Joshua King of AFC Bournemouth is fouled by Ruben Neves of Wolverhampton Wanderers during the Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and AFC Bournemouth at Molineux on December 15, 2018 in Wolverhampton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

According to a recent report by Sky Sports, Chelsea will face fierce competition from three of Premier League’s top six clubs including Manchester United in pursuit of Bournemouth forward Joshua King this summer. The same source has also revealed that the Norwegian striker has just one year left in his current contract and is likely to part ways with the Cherries in this off-season with the Blues keen on recruiting a new attacker during the summer transfer period.

King’s Lack Of Consistency At Bournemouth This Season

The 28-year-old has endured a frustrating season at the Vitality Stadium after failing to maintain his high standards from the previous campaign. He has banged in four goals and provided two assists in 20 appearances for Eddie Howe’s side this term across all competitions which have been underwhelming when compared to his record of 12 goals and four assists from last season.

King has averaged 0.9 shots, 1.2 key passes and 2.2 dribbles in every 90 minutes of football in the Premier League so far (stats via whoscored). His numbers highlight his inconsistencies wearing a Bournemouth jersey this season and goes to explain why he received less than 1500 minutes of game time before English football came to an unexpected standstill because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

To his credit, the former Blackburn Rovers attacker has a decent goal-scoring record at the international stage. He has registered 17 goals in 46 senior fixtures for the Norwegian national team. King will be expected to play a crucial role for his country in the UEFA European Championship finals playoffs later this year.

Chelsea face fierce competition in pursuit of Joshua King who is challenging for the ball in the photo
Joshua King of AFC Bournemouth battles for possession with Harry Maguire of Manchester United during the Premier League match between AFC Bournemouth and Manchester United at Vitality Stadium on November 02, 2019, in Bournemouth, United Kingdom. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

What Will The Norwegian International Add To Frank Lampard’s Side?

The Oslo-born marksman can use his quickness and acceleration to make some well-timed runs in behind the opposition backline. He is also a composed dribbler with the ball and tends to work his socks off for the benefit of his team. King has also transformed himself into an accomplished finisher in the final third but is usually always playing second-fiddle to Callum Wilson during his time with the Cherries. He can also be a bit sloppy with his ball-distribution after completing only 69.8% of his attempted passes in the English top-flight this season (stats via whoscored).

Maybe a summer switch to Stamford Bridge could help him earn more game time, but he will have to battle Tammy Abraham for the right to lead the charge for Frank Lampard’s side down the middle. The Norwegian could potentially form a lethal attacking partnership with Abraham if the Blues boss decides to set-up with two strikers up top in the coming seasons.

King will not only add more pace and goals to the West London club’s frontline but also enhance the overall depth of their squad. Based on his recent form, he is not good enough to secure a regular starting berth in Lampard’s first XI.

However, the Bournemouth forward will be more than a decent back-up to Abraham and might even turn out to be an effective impact substitute from Lampard’s bench. All in all, it makes sense for Chelsea to orchestrate a cut-price deal to bring King to the English capital when the transfer window reopens later this summer.

A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.