Jose Mourinho reckons that defender Branislav Ivanovic can play as a striker

Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho reckons that defender Branislav Ivanovic can play as a striker in order to help the club overcome the injury crisis upfront.

Ivanovic is one of the top goal scorers from defence with the Serbian managing to find the back of the net on a regular basis for both club and national teams. Most of his goals have come from headers, but he is also equally good with his feet. These qualities will appeal to Mourinho when his Chelsea team take on QPR at Loftus Road. The blues go into the match without two of their first choice strikers – Diego Costa and Loic Remy – both sidelined due to niggling injuries.

This leaves the club with only Didier Drogba as the recognised striker upfront. However, it remains to be seen if the former Ivory Coast striker can last the full 90 minutes at 37 years of age. Ivanovic has grown in leaps and bounds since moving to Chelsea as a £ 9 million signing in 2008. At 31, he is someone who provides immense experience to the team and it is not a surprise to have seen him play in every 32 league matches up until now. Despite being a defender, he already has six goals and four assists so far.

"People will think I'm mad but I have no doubt right-back Branislav Ivanovic could replace Diego Costa up front.He has a striker's instinct and excellent movement, as he showed brilliantly in the 5-3 win over Everton earlier in the season with his run and finish.He not the quickest but he's not slow and he looks to me like a player who has played as a centre-forward before in his career," said the club’s former winger Pat Nevin. Costa has scored 19 league goals this season.