Another day, another
dollar transfer rumour. Hey, at least this one isn’t regarding a new manager.
According to Germany’s Bild (via talkSport), Chelsea have entered the race for Hamburg's Jann-Fiete Arp, an 18-year-old German striker who's a very exciting and incredibly talented prospect. His meteoric rise has landed him right at the top of several European powerhouses' shopping lists, most notably Bayern, Tottenham, and now Chelsea.
Before I go into detail about the player, I must note that it seems pretty likely that Bayern will be acquiring Arp as the Bundesliga leaders have already seen a bid turned down earlier in March and, by now, even the Hamburg hierarchy are expecting the youngster to make the move down south. This doesn't come as a surprise, especially after he became the first player born after 2000 to score in the Bundesliga, as well as being the youngest player ever to score in Hamburg's history.
Tottenham have also been rumoured to be interested for quite a while now, going back as far as January (back then the player's father reiterated that he'd rather stay at his 'beloved' Hamburg, only a potential relegation making them reconsider) but it's been commonly acknowledged throughout the media there that, despite initially getting turned down, the Bavarians will ultimately be the ones to win the race.
Nevertheless, one can never really make guarantees in football and that's why I'd like to give you a brief overview of the still rather unknown youngster.
The speedy striker was frequently used in the first half of this season, scoring 2 goals in 16 Bundesliga games (around 800 minutes), a ratio that doesn't seem impressive at first glance but is to be expected from a player who was then still 17. In the two seasons before, Arp had scored 37 in 45 for Hamburg's under-17 team, as well as 15 in 17 games for the German under-17 national team. At one point, it was even reported that, due to Germany's lack of high quality strikers, he might even stand a chance of receiving a surprise call up from Jogi Löw, though this hasn't materialized as of yet.
The youngster has primarily played as the lone striker for Hamburg, epitomizing a traditional no.9 who shines due to his huge stature and clinical finishing, but possesses blistering pace at the same time (which has led to him also being utilized on the wing at times). However, as Hamburg's form gradually worsened, Arp hasn't been seeing as many minutes as he did in the first half of the season, the German side resorting to more experienced players such as Hahn, Kostic, and the American Bobby Wood (though they haven't been prolific themselves, to be fair).
In any case, even though Bayern seem to be the favourites to secure the young striker's signature, he'd definitely make a great acquisition for the loan army and will only continue to get better. However, having said that, I believe we already have a striker in our ranks in form of Tammy Abraham who represents a player with a very similar skill set to that of the German's.
Either way, this should be one of the players to keep an eye on for the foreseeable future as he'll very likely turn out to be one hell of a player. Arp has but one year left on his current contract at HSV and is likely to have to make a decision soon about his next move.
P.S.: There aren't really many highlight videos of the lad yet so this is the best I could find while browsing through youtube!