I'm having trouble finding a primary source on this one, but the internet is abuzz with the rumour that Chelsea are looking at picking up Lyon centre forward Bafetimbi Gomis this January, and sent scouts to Lyon's match against Paris Saint-Germain at the Parc des Princes in order to evaluate him.
Now, if I were a Chelsea scout, I'd be trying to watch Zlatan Ibrahimovic whenever possible just for fun, so maybe getting to go to this game is just their collective Christmas present, but those watching Canal+ are relaying the message that this is fairly serious -- some are even claiming that negotiations are already at an 'advanced stage'.
So, that's the 'news'. What should we make of Gomis? First of all, he's not the young striker most Chelsea fans are pining for. Instead, he's a 27-year-old on an absolutely ridiculous run of form. We're used to seeing about fifteen goals a season from Gomis in France, but last year he hit 19 between Ligue 1 and the Champions League, and he's already at 10 in 16 domestic matches matches in the 2012/13 campaign. That's obviously quite good.
I like Gomis quite a bit. He's strong and good in the air, but a calm and composed finisher with the ball at his feet and makes very good use of space. Coming from Ligue 1, he's unlikely to command much of a transfer fee or particularly high wages. But I have to admit that I don't understand why Lyon would sell -- they're at the top of the league at the moment and losing Gomis in January might cost them a Champions League spot next season. As far as I know, his contract doesn't expire until the end of next season, so it's not like he has Lyon over a barrel there either.
If Chelsea are looking in Ligue 1 for a striker, I'd prefer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at St. Etienne. He's younger, with bags of potential, and his club don't have the same sort of negotiating position as Lyon do -- it's just something that makes more sense all-around. I won't be upset if the Gomis rumours come to fruition, because he's certainly good enough to start for us and shouldn't cost an arm and a leg, but for right now I'm feeling pretty dubious about this one.