It’s set to be a frustrating few weeks for Chelsea fans as they have to watch their side’s transfer targets join other teams. This is exactly what will happen as a direct result of government sanctions. The Blues have been put at a disadvantage in recent months as they’ve been unable to hold any official personnel discussions and make resulting transactions before the takeover of the club is made official. Luckily, it seems as if Todd Boehly and Co. will get the deal over the line before the May 31 deadline. This is good news to Chelsea supporters, but there is unfortunately no making up for the time that has already been lost.
The Blues were first hit hard on the pitch by the exits of Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger. The two out-of-contract centerbacks departed the club after they were unable to sign contract extensions during the sanctioned period. Aurelien Tchouameni — who has been on the club’s radar for the last two or three years — is also set to join another European giant and there’s nothing the Blues can do to stop him. The most recent example of Chelsea missing out on a transfer target hits a little closer to home though as this versatile playmaker is set to join a direct rival.
Chelsea transfer target Ivan Perisic set to join Tottenham Hotspur on a free
Free agent utility man Ivan Perisic has been courted by several giant European clubs in the last few weeks. He looks to have made up his mind now as he’s set to re-join forces with his old manager, Antonio Conte, at Tottenham. Of course, Inter Milan did everything in its power to retain the Croatian, who has spent the last seven years with the club, but the challenge of English football was seemingly something that appealed to Perisic. The Blues also registered an interestbut sanctions prevented them from ever making an official offer.
It should come as no surprise that Perisic has chosen Spurs over other suitors. As mentioned above, the Conte connection goes a long way. Tottenham struggled in the wingback department following the Italian’s mid-season appointment, Perisic offers an experienced solution in these positions. He’s likely to start in Spurs’ system, whereas Chelsea could only have offered him a back-up spot behind the likes of Ben Chilwell. Marcos Alonso — who has sat behind Chilwell on the depth chart for the last two seasons — is ready to join Barcelona and the Blues need wingback reinforcements in case Chilwell’s recovery takes longer than expected.
In all honesty though, Chelsea dodged a bullet with Perisic joining Spurs. This is not to say he won’t be a success in the English top flight, Conte won’t let him fail, he’s just not what the Blues need at this moment in time. Thomas Tuchel has already made it very clear that this is a summer of rebuilding and ridding the squad of some deadwood. It’s a project that’s been necessary for two or three years now, the club just hasn’t had the consistency required to undertake this task.
Adding a 33-year-old is not exactly a smart decision at this point in time. Furthermore, the move would have seen Chelsea go from one disgruntled substitute to another. While Alonso played a majority of games this season, that was only the case because of Chilwell’s serious ACL injury. Perisic would not start over Chilwell — plain and simple. He is too good and he has too long left at the top level to be demoted to a back-up this season. Spurs was far and away the best option for Perisic this summer. While it may sound harsh to say, Chelsea dodged a bullet with the versatile veteran joining Tottenham instead of making the switch to SW6.
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