Radamel Falcao likely faces a patient wait on the sidelines to make an impact at Chelsea, according to former Stamford Bridge favourite Clive Walker.
Colombia star Falcao sealed a loan move to the Premier League champions on Friday, returning to England’s top flight despite an underwhelming 2014-15 campaign at Manchester United.
Falcao will battle with former Atletico Madrid colleague Diego Costa for a starting spot in Jose Mourinho’s XI, though the Spain striker is set to take precedence after a 20-goal maiden season in the Premier League.
Having seen Loic Remy and returning hero Didier Drogba play second fiddle to Costa last term, Walker anticipates Falcao will also have to bide his time.
He told Perform: “As everybody will tell you, Diego Costa is the number one starter and Chelsea, as in seasons gone by, we can only presume they will play with one man up front again.
“It does limit the opportunities for someone like Falcao. But he’ll know that as Loic Remy did last season he came in and knew he’d be struggling for opportunities.
“But when he [Remy] came in and played he did very, very well.
“Falcao is probably looking at a similar scenario. He had an injury and not really fired at Monaco or Man United, so for a player who’s been outstanding, he’ll want to get back on track and maybe when he’s given opportunities, he’ll perform.”
Walker believes that Chelsea’s ability to plug holes in their squad with quality performers again earmarks them as favourites for the Premier League.
He added: “When you look at Chelsea’s squad from last season in terms of areas to strengthen, obviously Didier Drogba leaving left an opportunity for someone else to come in.
“We saw Frank Lampard leave and Cesc Fabregas came in, when players do leave you see the gap being filled.
“When you fill the gaps with the sort of quality that Falcao has produced in the past, hopefully when he comes to perform again for Chelsea, he can bring that quality to the squad.
“It does enhance Chelsea’s opportunity of retaining the title, but believe you me, it’s going to be tougher this season than last season.”
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