'I'm shocked': Paul Merson can't believe Chelsea didn't sign 28-year-old this month after his PL transfer
Paul Merson has explained why he’s “shocked” Chelsea haven’t signed Frenchman Lucas Digne this month.
Digne, who had a fallout with Everton manager Rafael Benitez, was heavily tipped with an exit from Goodison Park during the January window.
Eventually, Aston Villa signed the talented left-back from Everton this week in a transfer worth around £25million.
90min previously reported this window that Digne would prefer to join Chelsea over any Premier League rival. However, the Blues speculation never developed any further, and he’ll now look to be a real asset for Steven Gerrard’s Villa team.
Merson has spoken about Chelsea’s troubles in the wing-back positions since injuries to Ben Chilwell and Reece James hit, so is a little surprised they didn’t secure a deal to bring Digne to Stamford Bridge.
“Aston Villa have done well there to get Digne. Very well. He’s a good attacking player who gives you great service, he’s comfortable on the ball, and he can defend,” Merson wrote.
“I’m shocked Chelsea didn’t go for him because £25m is not a lot of money for them. They haven’t been the same team since the wing backs got injured.”
Chelsea’s LWB problem
For certain, losing England international Ben Chilwell for the rest of the season through injury has been a massive blow to Chelsea.
They’re really missing his energy and athleticism out wide at times, albeit Marcos Alonso isn’t a bad understudy.
Alonso does need help, though.
It looks like Chelsea’s forgotten man Kenedy may now be the man to provide cover at left wing-back in the second half of the season after the club decided to recall him from his loan at Flamengo in January. Tuchel described it yesterday as a “huge opportunity” for Kenedy at Stamford Bridge.
Digne is a Premier League proven full-back with a lot of quality, but perhaps a £25million was a little bit too steep for someone whose form has dropped off a little in the past 12 months.