According to the Premier League’s official twitter account (a numerous other sources on the social networking site), Chelsea have been given official permission by Newcastle to hold talks with striker Demba Ba.
But hold on a moment…
It was widely reported that Ba held talks with Chelsea earlier this week, meeting Stamford Bridge officials on Sunday night.
As several people have pointed out on twitter, this is rather like giving your girlfriend permission to talk to another man you’ve already seen her kissing.
Ba has been on prolific form for the Toon so far this season, bagging a fine 13 goals in just 20 starts – half of Newcastle’s 26 Premier League goals so far – adding to the 16 he scored last term.
With the Blues top target Radamel Falcao likely to stay at Atletico Madrid until at least the summer, Ba will compete with Fernando Torres for a place as the central striker at Stamford Bridge and his time at St James’ Park suggest he is exactly what Chelsea need.
The former West Ham striker does most of his work inside the penalty box and has the quality in front of goal to benefit from the service provided by the likes of Eden Hazard, Oscar and Juan Mata.
Indeed, there is compelling evidence that Ba should start ahead of the rejuvenated Torres: The former Hoffenheim forward has scored twice as many league goals since arriving in England in January 2011 than Fernando Torres has since his move to Chelsea in the same month, netting 36 to Torres’ 18.
The news will come as a blow to Arsenal fans. The North Londoners have also been linked with Ba, who admitted last month that a move to the Emirates Stadium would be a ‘dream’.
He will now be charged with ensuring Chelsea score enough goals to finish above their London rivals in the Premier League top four. Wages remain at issue, however, with initial talks reportedly breaking down over Ba’s £70,000 per week demands.
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