The last few weeks have been hectic on Merseyside, especially when it concerns huge incomings and outgoings during the summer transfer window.
The Reds have also welcomed young prospects such as Fulham’s Fabio Carvalho and Aberdeen’s Calvin Ramsey through the Shankly Gates, whilst also announcing the departure of Takumi Minamino to Monaco last week.
On the other side of the city, things have been hotting up as Frank Lampard’s Everton FC announced the £60 million departure of star-man Richarlison, as well as the free transfer of centre back James Tarkowski from Burnley.
But the loss of the Toffee’s Brazilian superstar has stung the hearts of Everton fans as they desperately put a list together of potential strikers that could fill his boots.
Sky Sports have reported that Everton approached the London club to sign Broja, but who is he? What are his strengths and weaknesses? LiverpoolWorld has compiled all the information you need to know.
Who is Armando Broja?
Armando Broja is a 20-year-old striker that is currently contracted to Chelsea Football Club, where he has risen through the ranks since joining the club in 2009.
Ironically, Broja made his professional debut for the Blues in a 4-0 hammering of Everton on 8 March 2020.
He has since been on loan spells with Dutch side Vitesse and in the Premier League with Southampton FC.
Despite being born in Slough, Berkshire, Broja plays his international football with Albania, qualifying for the national team as he is born to Albanian parents.
He has represented his country at under-19s, under-21s and senior level.
What are his stats in the Premier League and at international level?
Before he made the switch to the south coast in the summer of 2021, Broja had only made one Premier League appearance, coming on as a late substitute for Olivier Giroud in Chelsea’s win over the Toffees in 2020.
However, after a successful loan spell in the Netherlands where he scored 10 league goals in 30 appearances with Vitesse, the Albanian international wanted to test himself in the big leagues, accepting a one-year loan deal with Southampton FC.
Playing under Ralph Hasenhuttl, Broja had a season of two-halves, where he scored six goals in 32 Premier League matches, with more than 75% of the goals taking place in the first half of the season.
When it comes to representing Albania, Broja has had quite the fruitful spell despite having not nailed down a starting place in the first eleven.
The 20-year-old scored the first of his four senior goals for his country against Hungary in a 1-0 win during a 2022 World Cup Qualifying match in September 2021.
What are Broja’s strengths and weaknesses?
The following are the strengths and weaknesses that Armando Broja has shown during the infancy of his footballing career so far, as per WhoScored.
- Strength: due to his 6ft 3inch frame, he is quite your typical towering target man that can be quite physical
- Shooting: he has an eye for a goal with good finishing, becoming the first Albanian to ever score in the Premier League
- Pace: despite his height, he is definitely quite quick on his feet
- Intelligence: his link-up play and knowing when and how to release the ball was a quality on display during his spell with the Saints
- Passing: there were many an occasion during his career where he over or under hits passes which has brought the team under pressure
- Work rate: Broja took a long time to consistently start for the Saints, with reports that Ralph Hasenhuttl not believing he was initially committed to his high energy way of playing football
- Holding the ball up: despite his target man nature, Broja often holds up the ball but gets overwhelmed and does not know what to do with it, often ends up wasting possession
- Ghosting during games: the second half of the 2021/2022 campaign, Broja was merely a participant in games, often not having an effect and letting the 90 minutes pass him by
How much will Everton have to pay to sign Armando Broja?
Broja is on the transfer shortlist of numerous clubs both in the Premier League and across Europe, with the likes of West Ham and Southampton reportedly holding considerable interest in acquiring his services.
He could still remain at Chelsea and play himself into Thomas Tuchel’s first-team plans, with the Blues’ record signing Romelu Lukaku recently returning to Inter Milan on-loan leaving them short-stacked up-front.
However, reports in the media this week have revealed that the Chelsea manager has left the Albanian out of his pre-season squad that will tour the US before the Premier League season kicks off in August, putting his future in London in jeapardy.
The rumoured fee to sign Armando Broja is around the £30 million region, which is around half of what Frank Lampard and Everton accumulated in the sale of Richarlison to Spurs.
Do Everton FC need Armando Broja and will he be a replacement for Richarlison?
Frank Lampard currently has two senior first-team strikers at the club following the departure of Richarlison to Tottenham Hotspur.
One of those is Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who had an injury-stricken Premier League campaign last time out, only reaching 17 appearances with a five goal return.
With only the England international and Solomon Rondon - who only scored once in 20 games last season - Everton will need a striker to replace Richarlison’s 10 goals that kept the Toffees in the English top-flight with a 16th place finish.
The squad definitely needs goals, so the arrival of Armando Broja to the club will definitely add that, but will he score enough to make fans forget the name Richarlison?
It is likely that to replace the Brazilian that there will need to be an additional name on top of Broja to make the desired impact, with other targets such as Watford’s Emmanuel Dennis linked with a move to Goodison Park.