Arsenal are reportedly continuing to monitor the availability of Chelsea forward Demba Ba in view of a new loan deal, according to reports in The Telegraph.
The Senegalese forward only joined the Blues from Newcastle early last year but already looks surplus to requirements in West London with both Samuel Eto’o and Fernando Torres ahead of him in Jose Mourinho’s pecking order.
The Gunners attempted to land Ba on transfer deadline day last summer but Chelsea cancelled the proposed deal when Arsene Wenger landed Mesut Özil from Real Madrid as they feared the threat of a resurgent London rival.
The report states that Arsenal still have an interest in him and are likely to bid if it becomes clear the player is allowed to move this month. Chelsea have reportedly offered around £50 million to Napoli for Gonzalo Higuain this week and are thought to have told Ba that he can leave on loan if that deal materialises before the window shuts.
The 28 year old has started just twice in the Premier League this season and is yet to complete a full 90 minutes, scoring just once in eight domestic appearances. However he scored 36 goals in 66 top tier appearances for Newcastle United and West Ham prior to his move to London but has fallen down the pecking order under Mourinho.
Ba, who stands at 6 ft 2 in, is a real handful in the box not only from aerial chances but also with his ability to shake off defenders, powering through into dangerous positions and getting in front of his markers. He is more than just a target man and his finishing is both efficient and intelligent. His direct running, touch, control and confidence in front of goal can make a real difference for Arsenal.
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The Gunners would certainly offer more consistent playing time with only Olivier Giroud and Nicklas Bendtner as recognised forwards, but Chelsea will almost certainly swiftly reject an approach from across the capital unless their search for a new star striker is successful. Whilst Ba hasn’t set the world alight at Stamford Bridge this season, it’s fair to say he would do a good job at the Emirates.
He is very much similar to Giroud in his physical stature and general style of play and thus would seamlessly fit into the team if he ever needed to replace the Frenchman, but preferably we need someone who can run past defenders and who can play behind the striker as well as up front when the situation demands, more like Diego Costa.
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