One of the brightest talents at the Euro 2020 competition so far has been 21-year-old Alexander Isak. The Swedish international has yet to score a goal yet in the group stage, but has showcased his excellent technical ability and flair in abundance. In a pretty dull Swedish side, Isak has been the spark and one-to-watch every time he touches the ball and with a lack of depth at the striker position looming, is Alexander Isak a legitimate target for Chelsea this summer?
El Gol Digital has reported that Chelsea are willing to spend €60m on the Real Sociedad starlet. However, this fee falls just short of his release clause which sits at €70m and the transfer will be even more hard to complete with Dortmund in the equation also. Borussia Dortmund have a buy-back clause of just €30m which seems extremely cheap for the talent and potential that Isak possesses. Isak’s stock has risen tremendously since his performance in a 0-0 draw against Spain and this has resulted in Liverpool and Arsenal also joining the race.
With Sancho on the verge of leaving to Manchester United, the German side may look to bring Isak back to replace him and provide backup to Erling Haaland. The Haaland transfer saga becomes even more troublesome by the day with numerous journalists and sources reporting differently and we could have to wait until next summer to join the race for the Norwegian again.
Isak reportedly does not want to go back to Dortmund where he rarely featured for the senior team and played just five games in the Bundesliga during his three year tenure. However, I feel he has no say in the buy-back clause and could be forced to return to Germany if that clause is activated. He would become second fiddle to 20-year-old Haaland which would not be good for his development and overall game.
Dortmund are in a spectacular situation at this current time and could even look to bring Isak back just for the sake of selling him on for profit. This would be perfect business by the Germans but could end up seeing Chelsea pay more for the Swede as the €70m release clause would no longer be in effect. Isak is currently valued around the €40m mark via Transfermarkt and I feel this could rise even more after the Euros.
Bringing Isak in to replace Giroud and Tammy would be a lot of pressure for a 21-year-old and if signed he would presumably undergo a long adjustment period similar to that of Kai Havertz and Timo Werner. The Premier League is a completely different standard to the Bundesliga and La Liga but he is showing at the Euros that he can perform with the best that Europe has to offer.
Alexander Isak is a unique striker with exceptional height and technical skills that make him an anomaly to the usual 6ft+ centre forward. Some of Isak’s main skills include his timing of runs in behind and his inclusion in hold up play. Holding up the play can be of use to Chelsea as it would allow Mason Mount and Kai Havertz to make runs in behind where a defender has been dragged out of position. Exceptional hold up play also will help Chelsea to maintain possession which is key to Tuchel’s philosophy.
The Swedish breakout star scored 17 goals and acquired 2 assist in 34 games for Real Sociedad as he became their star man this season up top. Isak’s most impressive run of form was seen in 18/19 when he played at Willem II and put up exceptional numbers, 13 goals and 7 assist in 16 games was an incredible output for a 19-year-old. Isak was credited with the young player of the season award in La Liga after his impressive 20/21 campaign and his praise hasn’t stopped there. Rio Ferdindand said that “This kid Isak, he was a problem today for the defenders in the Spain team. He was a nuisance. He showed today why he’s got Young Player of the year in La Liga”.
I’m not saying Isak is near the level of Haaland but with what is on the market at this time regarding strikers is very very sparse and a breakout star that will be full of confidence from the Euros could be the perfect alternative instead of Haaland and Lukaku.
His impressive coordination, balance, dribbling and technique can be seen in the clips below.
Written by Frankie