I have been a fan of Chelsea forward Alvaro Morata since his Juventus days and championed the forward in this editorial in the past. I also believed that the Spaniard would need time to adapt to the Premier League.
However, to be fair to the striker he is already proving his worth to the champions. On Sunday afternoon, Morata helped the Blues record a 2-0 win over Everton at Stamford Bridge, scoring once and producing an assist.
In doing so, he became the first player in Premier League history to both score and assist in his first two home games. Not bad for a player that many wrote off after a poor display in the Community Shield.
Replacement for Diego Costa
Morata is essentially Diego Costa’s replacement at Chelsea, despite the fact that his international teammate is in exile in Brazil. In many ways, the Brazilian-born striker is the past at Stamford Bridge, as Blues boss Antonio Conte recently stated.
A shock move to Everton could actually happen. Costa is now odds of 6/1 to join the Toffees before Thursday’s transfer deadline. This would only likely be a deal until January when Atletico Madrid’s transfer ban is lifted and the striker returns to his former club.
Costa’s potential exit does not seem to bother the Chelsea fans. The Blues fans seem happy that they still have a striker who can lead their attacking line and knows where the net is in the Premier League.
Morata is a very different character to Costa, both on and off the pitch. The Spaniard comes across as a nice guy, who will not cause problems in the dressing room. Costa comes across as a guy who could cause trouble in an empty room.
There is no question of Costa’s football ability and the qualities he brings to the team when on form. However, his combustible personality is not always ideal for creating a good atmosphere in the dressing room.
Morata is a very good footballer. One day he may even become as good a footballer as Costa. However, Costa has slightly more experience. However, Morata has achieved more at a younger age in terms of medals than his international teammate.
The 24-year-old has the winning mentality, without all the potential problems that come with having Costa around the place.
Will score goals in the Premier League
I have to admit I had slight doubts that Morata would hit the ground running in the Premier League. However, having watched him a lot at Real Madrid, there was a feeling that Morata would score goals in the English top-flight given the opportunities.
Only Barcelona’s Lionel Messi bettered Morata’s goal per minute ratio in La Liga last season. Morata definitely knows the direction of the net. A return of two goals and two assists in three appearances for the Blues is a solid return so far in the English top-flight.
That record is even more impressive considering that Chelsea have started the campaign without star playmaker Eden Hazard. The Belgian international is reportedly close to a return to first-team action after featuring for the Blues second string.
I would imagine Morata would only benefit from Hazard’s presence on the pitch this season. Hazard forged a good relationship with Costa. If the pair can strike up a similar sort of relationship then the Blues will prosper this season.
More to come from Morata
At 24, Alvaro Morata is still young for a striker. The striker has the potential to become a top striker in world football. He is not particularly sharp or quick. However, his football brain transcends those attributes. His intelligence makes him a striker whose ability to be in the right place at the right time will see him score goals.
Morata has played just three times in the English top-flight and already he is looking at home in the Premier League. Despite his good start at Chelsea, there is still much more to come from the striker at Stamford Bridge. Heaven help Premier League defences when he is accustomed to the league, though.
Can Alvaro Morata fire Chelsea to the Premier League title this season?
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