The Deadline Day action promises twists and turns similar to Manchester City’s title win over Manchester United back in the 2011-12 season. As the dying hours of the transfer window roll in, clubs in Europe are scrambling to push through some last minute deals. However, it is popularly believed that the January window is the quieter one of the two and with the FIFA World Cup coming up; most teams would be waiting to use the Holy Grail event of football to scout for rising talents.
This would have meant that it would not have been the worst prediction to call a calm window in England this January. Howbeit, as fate would have it, the transfer gods of football gave the media plenty to report about this month. One of the possible reasons behind this could be the panic spreading in England owing to the dawn of Pep Guardiola’s machine at Manchester City. It has made the best managers in the game second guess the strength and depth in their squads.
The first big transfer came with the much-debated Virgil Van Dijk saga coming to an end as the Dutchman claimed his dream move to Anfield. Following up on it was the much-speculated move for Alexis Sanchez. The mercenary from Arsenal chose to join the Red Devils army and is reported to be earning around £350,000-a-week.
Football fans were hardly given time to recover from these transfers before another cascading effect was set in order amongst Chelsea, Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund. It was widely known that Chelsea are in the hunt for a traditional number nine while Arsenal fans would have wanted to see Sanchez replaced with a marquee signing. The Gunners targeted Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang but the German outfit was unwilling to let go without signing a replacement first. This brought Chelsea into the deal who had a striker to spare in Michy Batshuayi.
The West London club read the situation carefully before indulging their interest in Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud. Giroud’s chances at Arsenal got cut short this season after the arrival of compatriot Alexandre Lacazette in the summer. This created a perfect situation for Chelsea who were ready to send Batshuayi to Dortmund if Arsenal sold them Giroud and thereby paving the path for the Gunners to land Aubameyang. Although Arsenal would not have wanted to lose Giroud, especially to a rival club, they had little choice but to lose a trustworthy pawn in the Frenchman to get their much-sought-after knight in Aubameyang.
With the deal for the Gabon international now confirmed and Batshuayi photographed in Germany undergoing a medical, it can be believed that Giroud’s deal is only minutes away from completion. The veteran striker is said to be undergoing medical at Stamford Bridge and will complete the “domino effect” of what can be said to be a truly remarkable Deadline Day for all three clubs.
Giroud’s arrival will provide Chelsea with some much-needed solidarity up front and the Frenchman who has improved leaps and bounds since his early days will give Conte the option to rotate Alvaro Morata so as to prevent the Spaniard from burning out.
Giroud is one the best number nines in the league now in terms of hold-up play and linking up with his teammates and should Chelsea complete the deal for him for £18 million, the Blues will have pulled off a steal in today’s inflated market. It is yet to be seen though where Giroud lands up come 11 pm tonight, as the one predictable thing in football is the unpredictability of it.
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