Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is interested in signing Radamel Falcao. The former Real Madrid boss revealed publicly that he would try to help Falcao getting back to his old best. And from those remarks it is quite clear that West London is the most likely destination for the Colombian striker this summer.
Falcao divides opinion among the critics. Had Chelsea been interested in signing him 2-4 years back, one could have said with utmost conviction that Falcao will definitely going to be a huge signing for the club. But can one say such things now with full confidence? Rather it gives the notion that Mourinho is taking a huge gamble on Falcao. The transfer move can turn out to be a huge hit, or a massive disaster.
Only few years back, Falcao was considered as one of the best players in the world. There was very few no 9, poacher type striker in the world better than him. He was simply outstanding. A goal machine in truest sense. He scored 72 goals for Porto in 87 matches and further added 70 odd goals for Atletico Madrid in just two seasons.
However, after Falcao suffered his ACL tear before the 2014 World Cup, he didn’t look like the same player anymore. He scored only four goals for Manchester United last season. For a player of his calibre, who has a proven track record of scoring goals, such return was simply unacceptable.
Many would say that Falcao wasn’t used properly by Louis van Gaal. He didn’t fit into the system at Old Trafford. But what the critics would say now in his defence after a miserable Copa America campaign? In four matches for Colombia, he has failed to find the target once, didn’t register any assist and had only six shots in the entire competition. Kieran Gill writing for Daily Mail has asked this question – What does Jose Mourinho sees in the striker that no one else can?
The interesting part about Falcao is his high price tag and his massive weekly wages. His face value is around £40-43m. Some of the big European clubs probably can afford to pay that money but who would be willing to gamble on him especially after his miserable performance last season?
It took Manchester United £6m and £228,000 weekly wages to sign him on a season-long loan last summer from Monaco. He turned out to be a huge flop, as a result, United didn’t risk of paying over £40m and sign him permanently.
Chelsea, however, are willing to take this gamble. The Blues have had a bad history of signing high profile strikers, who may have passed his prime like Fernando Torres or Andriy Shevchenko, and therefore an element of doubt remains over how the transfer will pan out even with Mourinho in charge. In Chelsea’s case, it is more of a calculated risk. The club have asked Falcao to take a significant pay-cut. Secondly, Chelsea are willing to send three of their highly talented academy youngsters on loan (Nathan Ake, Andreas Christensen and Ruben Loftus-Cheek) in the form of a swap deal. It’s a stunning piece of business that suits all parties involved here.
If Falcao turns out to be a hit, that is if he scores 15-20 goal next season, the deal will be hailed as a master stroke from Mourinho. The Special One will be praised heavily in the media for turning the player around. However, if he turns out to be a flop, people will point out that Falcao is not good enough to play at the highest level anymore. Chelsea will not be affected financially and they can send him back to Monaco.