Why Chelsea should make a move for Alphonse Areola

According to Le10 Sport (h/t The Express), Chelsea are interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Alphonse Areola in the summer.

Areola, 27, joined PSG’s youth system from ES Petits Anges in the summer of 2008. Having come through the ranks at PSG, he initially found it hard to break into the senior set-up. And he was sent on loan to Lens, SC Bastia and Villarreal.

His impressive performance with Villareal, where he kept 15 clean sheets in 32 La Liga games in the 2015/16 season, helped him when he returned to his parent club. He went on to become the first-choice shot-stopper at Parc des Princes and made 107 appearances, managing a staggering 53 clean sheets before moving to Real Madrid on loan last summer.

Alphonse Areola is currently on loan with Real Madrid (Getty Images)
Alphonse Areola is currently on loan with Real Madrid (Getty Images)

However, he has played second-fiddle to Thibaut Courtois in Santiago Bernabeu and has not been a regular in any of the competitions this term. Thus, Chelsea should take advantage of his situation in Spain and make a move for the Frenchman.

Chelsea’s goalkeeping conundrum

The Blues have managed to stay in the top-four this season. Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has done a stellar job in his first season in charge at Stamford Bridge. However, there are some key areas the manager should focus on strengthening.

He has to bring in reinforcements to the goalkeeping department. Kepa Arrizabalaga and Willy Caballero are the two shot-stoppers available at the manager’s disposal. However, both of them haven’t been convincing throughout the campaign.

Kepa Arrizabalaga has been inconsistent throughout the campaign (Getty Images)
Kepa Arrizabalaga has been inconsistent throughout the campaign (Getty Images)

Arrizabalaga is the first-choice shot-stopper and his dip in form led to Lampard pushing him to bench for quite a number of games in February. The former Athletic Bilbao man has conceded 37 goals in 28 league games, while managing to keep just 6 clean sheets.

On the other hand, Caballero failed to grab his chance when he was handed a start in a few games. In the 4 games he featured this season, he has conceded 7 goals and has no clean sheet to his name.

As a result, the Blues have conceded 44 goals in the league so far, which is the worst defensive record among the top 8 teams in the league standings. Thus, it is clear that a goalkeeper is a must in the summer.

In that regard, signing Areola could help them bolster their goalkeeping department. The Frenchman had been in sensational form until last season, where he played regularly. Though he has rarely featured for Los Blancos this term, he has managed to keep 3 clean sheets in 8 games across all competitions.

Alphonse Areola in action against Club Brugge in the Champions League (Getty Images)
Alphonse Areola in action against Club Brugge in the Champions League (Getty Images)

His inclusion to Lampard’s squad would definitely bring competition and depth to their goalkeeping department. Given his form until last season, he could be a valuable player for Chelsea if he is able to replicate the same good form.

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Verdict

With Arrizabalaga linked with a move away from Chelsea and Caballero ageing, it is the right time for Lampard to cash in on a goalkeeper. And Areola could provide them with the security at the back. Thus, they should make a move for the French international and lure him to Stamford Bridge this summer.