Having signed N’Golo Kante from Premier League club Leicester City, Chelsea now has to shift attention to other department they want to bolster in the transfer window. With John Terry ageing and likely to retire at the end of the current season, and the fact that Zouma may not remain the player he was before his injury, it is obvious Chelsea could do with the signing of another centre back.
To this end, reports claim the West London club is interested in signing AS Roma’s centre half Kostas Manolas. The Greece international is among numerous centre backs that have been linked with a move to Chelsea this summer. However, Chelsea do not have a monopoly interest in the player as Arsenal are also said to be interested in signing him.
Premier League rivals Chelsea and Arsenal have both agreed personal terms with the player after they both tabled offers worth €4m annually for Manolas according to reports, a fee that is more than what he earns at his present club Roma, according to Italian newspaper La Gazzetta Dello Sport.
The only challenge remains agreeing a transfer fee thanks to the defender’s complex transfer agreement when he signed for Roma from Turkish Super league club Olympiakos as revealed by Football Leaks in April.
The strong centre half would be a decent signing for both Chelsea and Arsenal. Manolas is a solid central defender who has a good tackling and blocking ability. Signing the of the Greek will be a masterstroke for both clubs.
And although he has a complicated agreement with Roma, as cited above, the fact that both Arsenal and Chelsea have tons of money to spend could ensure the complicated agreement is not a barrier. And this is why I think it is Chelsea that will end up signing the former Olympiacos player. It will boil down to who is willing to pay the most money and in that case Chelsea will win easily.
Arsenal surely have a lot of money in their reserve, as can be seen by their financial reports, but it is one thing to have money, it is another thing to be willing to spend it. Arsenal also have the lure of Champions League football to tempt the player to the Emirates but let’s be honest, using the lure of Champions League football alone no longer works these days.
For instance Paul Pogba is about to sign for Manchester United and are not in the Champions League. Kante has signed for Chelsea who are also not in the Champions League. And as they say, money talks, bullshit walks.
Daily reckons Roma are demanding as much as £38m for the player, an amount we all know Arsenal are unlikely to play for a centre back.