Friday, March 31, 2023

Analysing The Mad Transfer Of David Luiz To Chelsea

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Chelsea were one of the many clubs looking for a defensive cover in the transfer window. In fact the Blues targeted a central defender in the last summer also but ultimately failed to get their main target John Stones come to Stamford Bridge. Instead they had to settle for Papy Djilobodji on the deadline day. This time, Kalidou Koulibaly was identified as the primary target and Chelsea were so desperate to get their man that they even increased their bid for the £40m rated defender to £42m after offering £19m as their opening offer. When it became increasingly clear that Napoli won’t part with the defender at any price, Conte turned his attention towards AC Milan defender Alessio Romagnoli who was, according to the Italian club, ‘unsellable’.

After failing with a series of bids for both the players, who were the club’s primary and secondary targets, Chelsea decided to shell out £32m to bring former Chelsea fan favourite David Luiz back to the club on deadline day. It was a very surprising move considering that Conte never had considered the possibility of signing the Brazilian up until maybe the final few hours before deadline day. David Luiz was originally signed by the London club in 2011 from Portuguese club Benfica.  Luiz, during his time at the club, won the F.A Cup, Champions League and the Europa League turning out to be a fan favourite with his flamboyant appearance and his knack of scoring against big oppositions. While his superb technique and passing allowed him to join the attack moving into the midfield seamlessly, his venomous free kicks left many goalkeepers scratching their heads. Everything about Luiz seemed to be great except when it came to defending. Being a defender it is the first and foremost thing which the player needs to excel at but in that section he has been far from convincing.

There were days when he seemed great in the defence but he committed so many mistakes so often that he was always considered to be a suspect and someone who can offer his fair share of eccentricity in his position which proved to be the downfall of his own team. The erratic performances of the defender led to his transfer to PSG and in the mad world of football transfer where the clubs spend just on the basis to show their spending power in some cases, the French club allowed Chelsea to complete their greatest ever transfer business by paying £50m for the Brazilian and making him the most expensive defender in the world, something which no football expert has been able to comprehend yet.  Even after his exploits in the World Cup 2014, where his dismal defensive performance would be remembered forever by Germany and also the Brazilian national team for ages, with the only difference being that the Germans will cherish it, the central defender was an integral part of PSG’s first team as they swept the silverwares domestically having virtually a free run to the titles. The quality of the French league allowed this huge mistake not to be exposed very often but in the Champions League it did as David Luiz performed in a typical David Luiz fashion. The world record fee paid for the transfer becomes even more difficult to understand when one considers the 2014 Champions League tie Chelsea played against the French Champions. In the first half, Luiz was unstoppable, appearing to be invincible at the back while giving the opposition cold sweats with his forward dashes. In the second half, he couldn’t win a single tackle, took a flurry of bad decisions, gave the ball away which led to a goal for PSG and also scored an own goal to finish off his 90 minutes. It was this performance after which Chelsea managed to sell him for £50m.

For the next year and a half Chelsea fans raved about the exemplary shrewdness their club showed in getting a £29m profit out of David Luiz only for their club to recapture him for another £32m on the deadline day to convolute their profits and incur a total of £3m as a loss(21+32-50=-3)on the overall deal on the defender. Conte brought him back so that he would have the provision of playing a 3 man defence whenever he would need it, to what extent it would be successful with the presence of Luiz in there remains to be seen though. Chelsea it seems has taken a leaf out of their rival Arsenal’s transfer mantra for this window where Arsene Wenger was reportedly trying to pull off a ‘Madness’. At the end it can be concluded safely that the only team to have pulled off a ‘Madness’ is Chelsea and not Arsenal. Chelsea thus beat Arsenal once again, the only problem is that this time the Gunners fans won’t mind much.

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