Napoli’s in-form striker Gonzalo Higuain rejected an apparent move to Chelsea during the recently closed transfer window as he felt he would not be the first choice at Stamford Bridge ahead of Diego Costa, according to a report from Daily Mail.
The Argentine attacker, who has long been a target for Arsenal, was approached by Napoli officials last month and was informed about a potential move to the Premier League.
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich was even ready to offer more than £40million for Higuain, according to the Daily Mail, but interim manager Guus Hiddink was not willing to guarantee that the Argentine would be the first choice ahead of Diego Costa but the Blues have made the Napoli striker their top summer transfer target as Atletico Madrid reportedly keen on re-signing their former striker Diego Costa.
However, Chelsea didn’t approach to the player’s club and it is still not clear whether the current Serie A leaders would have been ready to go their top scorer.
Higuain, who arrived at the Stadio San Paolo from Real Madrid for £33million, has so far netted 24 times in 24 league matches this season. With his contract set to expire in 2018, Napoli may be willing to sell him at the end of this season.
They reportedly value him around £40 million, but it’s a big question whether Chelsea would meet that price. If they do, they likely won’t be alone.
Meanwhile, Costa’s form has improved impressively since Mourinho’s departure and Hiddink’s appointment at Stamford Bridge.
The Brazil-born Spain attacker has seven goals from 9 matches under the Dutch manager, having only scored four times in his previous 21 appearances.
Chelsea are still desperate to add more fireworks to their forward line, as Radamel Falcao and Loic Remy both are not likely to stay on at the club next season.
Alexandre Pato, right now on loan from Corinthians and Chelsea’s only striking acquisition from the January transfer window, is yet to regain full fitness having not played a competitive match since November.
Although not being the quickest player, Higuain usually makes up for it with extensive hard work on the pitch, his excellent scoring rate, and technical skill. He is also known for holding up the ball effectively and his striking in front of goal, which has eventually earned him comparisons with Argentina legends Gabriel Batistuta and Hernan Crespo, who also made names in Serie A.