Date: 22nd January 2015 at 12:10pm
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Messi to Chelsea – is it realistic? Is it even a good idea?

For the first question we need do no more than look at the available ‘evidence’ in favour:

  • Messi is apparently unsettled and looking for a move
  • It would be financially possible because Adidas would support the purchase
  • Messi and Fabregas are really good friends
  • Messi recently followed the Instagram accounts of Luis, Courtois and Chelsea FC

Messi may be unsettled, he may not. There is no actual proof of this. Messi has been at Barcelona for the past 15 years so to suddenly become ‘unsettled’ now seems at least a little strange. He also signed another lucrative contract, making him the highest paid player in Europe.

Is a sportswear manufacturer really going to stump up money towards a bloated transfer fee? Apparently, Adidas are not particularly happy that Messi – one of their ‘stable’ – plays for a club sponsored by their rival, Nike. Therefore, they want to help clubs sponsored by them to sign him. It sounds ridiculous, and as far as I know, such a thing has never been done before. Adidas helping a club to buy Messi would be an extremely innovative and surprising move from a sportswear manufacturer.

I don’t doubt that Messi and Fabregas are great mates. When Cesc said it would be grand to have Messi at Chelsea, he almost certainly said that in friendly terms. He did not say it as part of an official transfer-plot.

As to Messi following some Chelsea related social media accounts; this has got to be totally meaningless. Firstly, this is entirely circumstantial evidence. Secondly, Messi’s social media accounts must be run by FC Barcelona drones most of the time, or at least his PR team.

And finally, Messi himself has utterly destroyed the preposterous speculation:

“I’m tired of all the things that people have been saying. People make it out as if I run the club and that’s not how it is. I don’t ask anyone to make decisions. I have no intentions of leaving for any team, not Chelsea nor Manchester City. Everything that has been said is lies and I want people to know that, everything that has been said is false. I have heard people say everything possible, that I got on badly with a lot of players and I never denied it because people have always said that I had a fall out with Guardiola, Bojan,Ibrahimovic, etc, but I didn’t say anything like that, I never would. People say these things because they want to cause us harm, they throw shit at us, and the attacks are not coming from Madrid.

Messi to Chelsea is a total fiction. But do we even need/want him?

I think that we do want him in as much as adding more talent to the squad can’t really be bad. If his presence didn’t cause a change of formation, he would probably take Willian’s spot in the team. That’s obviously an upgrade.

However, I’d imagine that even with Adidas’ support, signing Messi would detonate a bomb in our FFP-controlled finances. We would surely have to sell at least one high-class player to recoup that kind of money. Could you stomach the loss of Hazard for Messi? In that case, Messi would take Hazard’s spot. Would that be wise? Messi is 28 this year, so has years left at the top of the game. Hazard, on the other hand, is 24. I don’t think Eden has reached his peak yet – there’s more to come from him still. In light of this, and including the fact that Hazard’s wages must be much cheaper, I declare reluctance at swapping the two. Both would certainly be an improvement; just one of them is uncertain to significantly better the squad in the long run.

Adding Messi without having to sell players is the fantasy scenario – it won’t happen. Adding Messi, by selling our best young talent is far less attractive.

Messi would probably win trophies at Chelsea – but Chelsea will be able to win trophies without Messi.

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