Gonzalo Higuain would offer something “different” to Chelsea, says Mario Melchiot, with a striker of his ilk required to force the Blues back into contention for Premier League title challenges.
An assault on the summit appears to have already passed the Blues by in 2018-19, with a 10-point gap separating them from table-topping Liverpool.
Maurizio Sarri has sought to play down any talk of competing for top prizes, though, since inheriting the managerial reins from Antonio Conte last summer.
He considers Chelsea to be a work in progress during his debut campaign, with a new frontman among the many pieces of the puzzle he is after.
Goal has revealed that a deal is close to take Higuain from Juventus, with the Argentine having previously worked with Sarri at Napoli.
He is now 31 years of age, but is also a proven performer at the highest level and the kind of addition that Melchiot believes will benefit the Blues.
The former defender told talkSPORT when asked if Higuain could be the man to push Chelsea back into the fight for major honours: “Oh definitely.
“He’s a different kind of player; I feel like he’s capable of handling the defences in the Premier League and he also has way more experience, which is a big advantage.
“A team like Chelsea cannot afford to play a season without a striker who is scoring the amount of goals you need to at least compete for the league.
“That’s why they are struggling and are in the position they are in right now.”
As Chelsea work on bringing one forward in, they are also looking to move another out.
Alvaro Morata has an agreement in place with Atletico Madrid, as revealed by Goal, and is waiting on a green light from the La Liga outfit.
Melchiot considers that to be another piece of smart business by the Blues, with the Spain international having struggled to produce his best throughout an 18-month spell in west London.
The ex-Netherlands international said: “Sometimes, when you come to the Premier League, if you look from the outside, you have your picture right, but then when you get involved it’s a totally different thing.
“He probably feels like he’s been criticised in a certain way that he didn’t expect to happen so fast, and the game is so much tougher.
“When you look at the way Morata wants to play, it’s clear he has a lot of talent and has the ability to score goals.
“But in England, regardless if you have that, the fans won’t respect you in the same way they might in Spain or in Italy.”