New strikers including Christopher Nkunku and Nicolas Jackson have opted not to take on the number considered cursed by many in and around Stamford Bridge.

Ever since Diego Costa left the club in 2017, Chelsea have struggled to find a top scorer. Tammy Abraham is arguably the only forward to play with the number 9 since Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink.

When asked about the curse, Pochettino seemed genuinely unaware of the issue, saying: “If we put in one more shot I’ll be sure now that he uses the nine and try to change the feel and the idea .” that this number is not cursed.

“We have to do some things to change the energy. I’ll ask the kit guy to bring all nine jerseys and we’ll take some vigorous action to destroy them,” he added jokingly.

Pochettino also revealed that Chelsea are carefully reviewing the ‘profile’ of the striker he wants to sign in the final days of the transfer window.


Well-known targets include Arsenal’s Folarin Balogun, Nottingham Forest’s Brennan Johnson and Lyon’s Bradley Barcola.

Chelsea also need to sell some players as Pochettino is keen to reduce the squad to a maximum of 23 players including goalkeepers.

Ahead of Luton’s visit to Stamford Bridge on Friday night, Pochettino said he was happy to keep West Ham’s Conor Gallagher target but added that many of his players will have suitors.

He continued: “Other clubs work the same way as we do and maybe speak to some of our players. We must be aware of this.

“I haven’t heard anything at the moment [about Gallagher leaving] and I was unaware of some situations with our players. I don’t know anything at the moment. The club didn’t inform me and the player didn’t tell me anything.”

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