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No Going Back For Chelsea In Torres Deal

So, it’s being tweeted this afternoon that Chelsea will shortly announce the signing of Fernando Torres for £48m – a lot of money, an obscene amount really but if the alternative is £40m plus Nicolas Anelka, then the extra money is something the club just has to suck up really.

I was asked yesterday what I thought Chelsea needed right now, given yet another dire performance from us and my immediate response was ‘we need to sign Torres’. Not because I believe in throwing money around, if anything I’ve always been against huge transfer fees, but because firstly Didier Drogba either needs a kick up the arse or a move elsewhere and secondly, because our apparent inability to get our man these days could cost us a lot more than a few million.

Looking at Didier Drogba, Bolton aside (because I have my own view on why he turned up for that particular game) what we’re getting from him this season does not constitute value for money. In fact, if we introduced piece work at Stamford Bridge, the Ivorian would struggle to buy himself a square meal. So what’s it all about and what would the arrival of Fernando Torres change?

Well, Malaria’s been mentioned in his defence and whilst I’ve been quick to rubbish that as an excuse after all this time, it’s possible for the effects to take several months to clear completely. As far as I know though, the symptomatology doesn’t include delusional assaults on the field even if it explains the lethargy. The amateur dramatics seem to be creeping back in again and the theatrics against Everton yesterday were just embarrassing to sit through.

So, is it down to illness then or are we just seeing the by-product of a lack of constant adulation? Didier Drogba, as we know, has an ego the size of a large elephant and one that needs continuous feeding, if he’s not feeling the love then we’re the one’s who end up with the heartache. And let’s face it there’s been a lot of heartache this season.

Bring Fernando Torres into the mix then, and what would we see? Well it could go one of two ways as far as I see it. Either it would be a partnership made in heaven that paid dividends for both players, Drogba would feel his share of the love and we could live happily ever after (or at least for however much longer we could get out of him). Failing that, Torres could provide a bit more competition for Drogba than he might welcome and there’d be tears and tantrums along with familiar headlines of a reunion with TSO no doubt – and given that he turns 33 in March, maybe the time would be right to let him go this season anyway?

As for the club though, in terms of signing Torres, even for such an obscene amount it’s got to the point now where there shouldn’t be any going back. Not just because we desperately need someone firing up front but because we’re in danger of losing all credibility in the transfer market if it doesn’t go through.

Whilst I appreciate Roman’s stance when it comes to paying only what the club believe is a realistic fee for players (and God knows we’ve made some shocking mistakes when it comes to paying over the odds in the past) he’s in danger of cutting his nose off to spite his face if there isn’t even breathing space, never mind room for manoeuver.

That’s not to say we need to see a return to the days of throwing money about indiscriminately but we do need some kind of statement of intent if we’re to be taken seriously again, both on the field and off. If we want not only our rivals but also our own players to believe the commitment is still there to progress as a club, then we shouldn’t even entertain the idea of throwing players into deals – whether it’s solid and experienced players who perform consistently or the younger players we’re meant to be developing for our future – we just need to bite the bullet and pay what we have to, to bring Torres in.



Blue is the colour is an honest insight to the World of Chelsea FC. Not always pretty, sometimes rather cynical, but always realistic.


January 2011
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