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Chelsea enter race for £30m-rated Aston Villa star Benteke

| 21.05.2015

Liverpool (14/1 with Coral to win the 2015/16 Premier League) are reportedly set to be joined by Chelsea (13/8 favourites) in the race to sign Aston Villa star striker Christian Benteke in the summer, as both sides look to bolster their attacks.

Jose Mourinho’s men are already well-stocked up front, with Diego Costa highly impressing in his debut season, with Loic Remy and Didier Drogba as cover. But, with the former suffering from a few injury issues, it seems the Blues are still in the market for back-up.

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Aston Villa v Chelsea - Villa Park

Meanwhile, the Reds, although are up in fifth place, have scored the fewest goals of the top seven with 51 from 37 matches, and Brendan Rodgers is said to be scouring Europe for top talent up front.

Summer striking signings Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert have been less than useful this term in the top-flight, managing a combined three goals from a total of 40 matches. Daniel Sturridge, meanwhile, has been riddled with injuries this season, and has only been able to start seven Premier League games.

That means that Rodgers has been forced to play usual diminutive winger Raheem Sterling as a lone striker, although the young England international has been touted to leave too.

In Benteke, Liverpool would be getting a proven Premier League scorer, as the big Belgian has bagged a brilliant and crucial 16 goals across all competitions for Aston Villa, helping to steer them to safety as well as getting to the FA Cup final.

The Villans, who are 9/4 to beat Arsenal at Wembley, are desperate not to lose their main man, but have apparently slapped a £30m price on him in an attempt to wave off suitors.

Unfortunately for them, though, the likes of Liverpool and champions Chelsea will have money to spend.

Since joining Villa three seasons ago, Benteke has netted 49 times in all competitions with just over a goal every two games, which is an incredible achievement playing for a bottom half of the table club.

It seems that the choice will certainly be Benteke’s as to where he goes. Either continue to be the star player under Tim Sherwood, or earn mega bucks at Liverpool or Chelsea, where his playing time may be more limited, especially with the latter.

Betting tip: Aston Villa win FA Cup @ 9/4



Sam Barnard

Sam has been writing for Coral since January 2014, and is the assistant editor of the news site. As well as the main betting sports, football, tennis and cricket, he covers the likes of golf, F1 and darts too, the latter of which has become a particular favourite. Sam enjoys playing as much as writing about sports, but niggling injuries have limited his participation in recent years, so is happy to mainly watch the pros such as Manchester United, Yorkshire CCC, Raymond van Barneveld and even Gibraltar national football team instead.