Chelsea are long-term admirers of Real Madrid midfielder Casemiro and would be interested in signing the Brazil star this summer.
What’s the word?
That is according to a report from 90min who claim the Blues have been monitoring Casemiro longer than Manchester United, with owner Todd Boehly considering a late bid for the Real Madrid man.
Whilst Los Blancos are said to be reluctant to part with the 30-year-old, it is understood, as per the report, that the La Liga giants would not stand in his way if an offer of over €60million (£51m) was placed.
It is said that a natural defensive midfielder has been a key part of Chelsea’s transfer wish list for years, and scouts “have done plenty of work” on Casemiro.
Casemiro the Tank
Dubbed a tank “with a worrying supply of artillery in his inventory” by Shlok Talati of ManagingMadrid.com, Casemiro has proven himself as one of the utmost best defensive midfielders in world football over the years.
So it’s no surprise to see him with a series of elite metrics for his capabilities both in and out of possession.
With an average of 5.27 tackles & interceptions, with 11.23 ball recoveries per game, Casemiro has placed himself at the very top of the holding midfielder hierarchy and is defensively ahead of Joshua Kimmich and Chelsea’s N’Golo Kante as two comparisons who are also among the best defensive midfielders in the world.
For comparison, a potential Chelsea teammate in Kante averages 4.86 tackles & interceptions, with 8.88 ball recoveries per 90. Though, he is more of a box-to-box player in Thomas Tuchel’s midfield pairing, which is where the complication could also lie for Casemiro at Stamford Bridge.
Whilst the acquisition of Casemiro would allow Tuchel to comfortably deploy a 3-5-2 system that makes use of a single pivot, the German seems settled with the 3-4-2-1 system that originally saw him take the league by storm.
This would raise questions over how the 30-year-old Brazilian would fit into the side, as a duo of Casemiro and Kante could well be too regressive.
As such, a slight tactical switch would need to happen, in which the two holding midfielders, in this case Kante and Casemiro, would sit deep in the possession phase to provide cover for an easy-to-assemble back-five when out of possession.
This would mean that the wing-backs would be granted more attacking freedom due to not having to track back as often.
There are definitely ways of integrating the “sensational” Casemiro, as dubbed by Karl Matchett on Twitter, into the Chelsea line-up, though it remains to be seen as to whether Boehly deems the player, who is said to be on £184k-per-week, necessary.