Arsenal v Chelsea: Gary Neville says toothless Blues need new striker
Last Updated: 24/12/13 1:42pm
Chelsea playing 'with ten men'
Gary Neville says Chelsea must invest in a new strike option after seeing the Blues forwards once again fail on the road on Monday Night Football.
The west London outfit drew 0-0 with capital neighbours Arsenal at a rain-drenched Emirates as both sides squandered the chance to snatch Premier League top spot at Christmas from Liverpool.
"I thought it was a really poor performance from Torres."
However, while a point gained in difficult conditions may suit both teams in the long run, Neville says Chelsea's toothless attack away from Stamford Bridge is a major cause for concern and must be addressed when the transfer window opens next Wednesday.
Chelsea's strikers have failed to score in a Premier League away game in 2013 and Sky Sports expert Neville said: "That is a staggering statistic.
"With the talent that's in that team, with [support from] Eden Hazard, Juan Mata, Oscar and Willian - you're telling me their strikers can't score away from home? That tells me more than anything.
"They've got experience and a lot of players who will dig out results, and that's why they're hanging in there, but they're not killing teams off.
"Jose Mourinho has said he's not going into the transfer market in January but I can't believe that with Chelsea's history.
"At the moment the difference between them and City is City can play Sergio Aguero, Alvaro Negredo and Edin Dzeko, who have real power up front and score goals.
"Chelsea don't have that firepower."
Mourinho selected Torres to lead the line for the visitors on Monday night but Neville said the goal-shy Spaniard was simply not performing at the levels required by a team challenging for a Premier League title.
And he argued that Chelsea's alternatives, Demba Ba and Samuel Eto'o, don't offer the solution either.
"I thought it was a really poor performance from Torres tonight," he said.
"The way in which he showed for the ball, when it went up to him it didn't stick... if you're going to play with one striker, that is a tough position to play and you have to be an exceptional talent at this level to play there.
"But they're not good enough."
Neville's fellow Monday Night Football pundit Jamie Carragher agreed and stated he feels the lone strikers for Chelsea are not contributing enough to the team.
The former Liverpool defender pointed out that the Blues are still fourth in the table and just two points off top spot but insists they are performing well below their best and must seek to improve in the New Year if they want to clinch the crown.
Carragher said: "Mourinho has been quite critical of his attacking players going forward and he's talking about them not killing teams off. That makes me think 'are they going to get sold? Are they going to bring players in?'.
"They're two points off the top so we're not talking about a bad season for Chelsea but they're yet to really convince.
"They've come here and done a job, like in a European away game, like they did at Old Trafford earlier in the season - but something's still not quite right.
"I feel for Mourinho when I see Chelsea play, though, because a lot of the time it's like they're playing with 10 men; they're getting nothing from the striker.
"We can talk about the wide men not giving them much but the difference between winning and losing is putting away split-second chances. Torres doesn't even get the chance.
"Whether you play Ba or Eto'o, whoever he plays just doesn't seem to work."