Pundit claims Chelsea will be excited to sign top 24-year-old striker

Antonio Conte will be "licking his lips" at the prospect of adding Alvaro Morata to his Chelsea squad, according to pundit Paul Mariner

Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata Photo: Adidas

Antonio Conte will be “licking his lips” at the prospect of Chelsea signing Alvaro Morata, according to Paul Mariner.

The Premier League champions appeared set to re-sign Romelu Lukaku in the summer transfer window as Manchester United looked to complete a deal for the Real Madrid forward.

However, in a surprise turn of events, the Red Devils have now agreed a £75m deal to sign the Belgium international despite interest from Chelsea.

While Conte will be disappointed to miss out on what has been billed as his top summer target, the Chelsea manager could turn his attention to Morata.

The Italian coach has knowledge of Morata and the Spain international played in the Juventus system that Conte created under his predecessor Massimiliano Allegri.

Former Everton star Mariner believes Conte would be more-than-satisfied with the addition of Morata should Chelsea suffer the disappointment of missing out on Lukaku.

“Morata knows the system Conte wants to play at Chelsea,” Mariner told ESPN FC.

“I think Conte will be licking his lips if he can get Morata. He can score all types of goals. He is a classic modern-day number nine.”

The Spanish forward scored 15 times in 26 appearances in La Liga last season.

Morata found his first-team opportunities under Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane rather limited, though.

Indeed, the 24-year-old featured in just 25 minutes of knockout football in the Champions League despite Real Madrid winning the competition.

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