Paul Merson thinks Chelsea’s January recruit Noni Madueke is not yet on the same level as Christian Pulisic or Raheem Sterling.
Madueke, who joined from PSV Eindhoven last month for £29million, is a right-winger that loves to cut infield on his favoured left foot.
The 20-year-old is a London-born attacker that enjoyed some great development at PSV, scoring 20 goals in 80 first-team appearances for the Dutch giants.
However, he’s now back in the English capital to show what he can do in the Premier League.
Sky Sports pundit Merson is a little confused as to why Chelsea spent the money on Madueke in the New Year, insisting he’s not as good as two senior wide forwards already at the club.
“You can’t tell me that Noni Madueke is a better player than Raheem Sterling or Christian Pulisic. He’s not. Why are you buying a load of players that aren’t better than what you’ve got?” Merson told Sky Sports.
First of all, Chelsea are fully aware Madueke is still only 20 and they’re investing in potential as much as current ability.
He’s definitely behind levels compared to someone like 28-year-old Sterling, which is understandable given his Blues teammate is a senior England international with so much experience.
However, Pulisic’s performances in a Chelsea shirt in recent years do little to suggests he’s miles above Madueke.
Journalist Simon Phillips previously claimed on his Substack that Pulisic’s current injury may have prevented him from leaving Chelsea in the January transfer window.
If you consider Blues plans to get rid of 24-year-old Pulisic, Madueke’s arrival starts to make a lot more sense.
Everything hasn’t quite come together yet at Chelsea since the new ownership took charge, but you can at least see some kind of strategy in place with a lot of the more recent transfers.
Graham Potter’s side are adding a lot of very promising and exciting rising stars. For Potter, his job is to integrate them and get them playing at their best.