Liverpool’s attempt to sign Virgil Van Dijk was tantamount to Jim’s attempt to sign Nadia in American Pie. Van Dijk wanted Liverpool. Nadia wanted Jim. Jim fumbled badly by well…y’know. Liverpool did the same, getting hilariously over-excited before ruining it.
Anyway, let’s look at some players Chelsea have been linked with along with my thoughts as to whether or not they would be a good fit in our team.
Likelihood Rating – 6
Bonucci has been linked with a move to the Premier League for what seems like years now. From the moment Conte joined us last year, Bonucci has been lazily linked with joining up with either his national team manager or Manchester City, the man himself seeming more than happy to stay in Turin.
This summer does seem a bit different. Bonucci is not as firm in his desires to stay in Italy and has outright said he would like a new challenge. Reports in Italy suggest that he would command north of 50m which would represent a massive outlay for a player reaching the latter years of his career, although Italian defenders have a great habit of getting better with age.
We certainly need a new defender, even with the likelihood of Andreas Christensen joining up with the first team squad next season. He is more than adept with fitting into a three at the back, having played in one under Conte aswell as that being the preferred formation of Max Allegri, his current boss. He brings obvious leadership skills, good technical ability and a genuine world class presence. A great signing should it come off.
Likelihood Rating – 4
A new one for us to be linked with and in a position we could certainly do with strengthening this summer. Sandro possesses pace, power and good technical ability from the flanks, he was one of the few Juventus players to perform well in the Champions League final last week. He hasn’t always been first choice for Juventus, having to share his spot with Asamoah over the past couple of years, but seems to have settled well recently in Italy and turned in some really good performances.
At 26, he is a good age for a defender, young enough to possess fantastic stamina levels and the desire to better himself. This would mean, however, that his transfer fee could be quite high. Reports have suggested that Juventus would command 61m for the Brazilian. Now, with us being interested in both Sandro and Bonucci, surely we could do a deal where we buy one and get the other free? In my opinion, it’s one or the other for us this summer and a centre-half is more of a priority for Antonio.
Likelihood Rating – 8
I almost didn’t include him, as there has been more than enough written about him over the past week or so, on this site alone! But I couldn’t leave it without passing a brief comment. I do not want this man back at my club and certainly not for the figures quoted! Let’s look at some good points first. He’s strong, quick, good in the air, adept at leading the line on his own and is proven in the Premiership. However, he is also incredibly selfish, a possible flat track bully and…how to put this nicely..an incredible mardarse. Anytime the ball doesn’t come to him when he’s in the box he throws his arms up in the air, huffs, puffs and stamps his feet, leaving his teammates to pick his toys back up.
There is talk it will cost upwards of 80m to bring him from Everton and the player himself has made no bones about where he wants to play his football next year. It seems a transfer waiting to happen. The worry from a non-personal point of view is how he will fit in with the quick passing of Hazard, Pedro, Willian and Fabregas. Costa has certainly struggled and Diego is slightly better than the Belgian with the ball at his feet.
There is a massive risk with this transfer. If it goes through it will likely be our only attacking signing of the summer, when we needed two at a minimum. It puts a lot of pressure on Lukaku to make it work and demands the team builds their style around him, something which I don’t think we have the players for.
Still. Should anyone feel sad about it, just think about Liverpool’s attempts to sign Virgil van Dijk this summer. That should bring a smile to anyone’s face.