With all the drama elsewhere in the CFC, there's hardly been time to keep up to date with the "minor" rumors of the Eden Hazard, Antoine Griezmann, and Paul Pogba kind. So let's see what's the word on those fronts.
Given his personal and the team's struggles, plus supposed friction (again) with the manager, perhaps it was unsurprising that just last week, half of Europe were lining up for the Premier League's Player of the Year (or his doppelganger, whichever the current Hazard may actually be). It took them a few days, but apparently they've now realized that Hazard has actually not been very good since the summer and thus have soured a bit on his prospects.
Real Madrid's plethora of second-line strikers mean Hazard, while highly rated, is not a priority. And Barcelona feel the player is too similar to Arda Turan who they signed last summer. Their summer 2016 priority will be Paul Pogba or Marco Verratti.
If Madrid and Barca's current lack of interest remains unchanged, Hazard will stay.
Good news for us! (Assuming he finds the real Hazard in himself again. Hint: it's probably not in your pants, Eden.)
The same Daily Mail report as above also continues the story of our supposedly unrelenting pursuit of the Atletico Madrid wing-forward and his massive €65m release clause. Apparenly, we might throw in Diego Costa to sweeten the deal, which seems a bit silly. Griezmann's a lovely player, no doubt, but he's not someone I'd want leading the line.
Antoine Griezmann, the 24-year-old Atletico Madrid forward, will follow Diego Costa's footsteps and move from Madrid to London at the end of the season if Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich gets his way.
The French forward could arrive to partner Costa in Chelsea's attack, although Costa would not be against the idea of returning to Atletico Madrid as part of the deal.
Of course Chelsea are hardly alone in our interest in Griezmann. Manchester United and Arsenal have been strongly linked as of late, and I'm sure they're not the only ones keeping an eye on things either.
Meanwhile, over in Italy, Juventus continue to match Chelsea in terms of shambolic performances, collecting just 12 points from their first 10 matches as they, too, attempt to salvage their season from a serious title defense to barely hoping to make the European spots. Pogba himself has struggled mightily at times, just like our best players have, and that has not helped cast any sort of certainty over his near-term or long-term future.
"We'll see what Barça's project is, and what Paul's project is. All doors are open to all clubs. For now, the young man decided last summer to stay for a minimum of one year at Juventus. We should always respect the will of a player when he chooses with his heart."
"We can't give figures, but last year Juventus said no to offers of €85m. One hundred million euros? Juve have always said that's the sum they want. It's a way of saying he's one of the best players on the planet."
"When he left Manchester [United] for Juve he chose with his heart, and it will be the same with his next club."
-Mino Raiola; source: Guardian
In addition to the usual English and Spanish suspects, Raiola also name-dropped PSG and Bayern Munich as he attempts to keep his client's value up in the stratosphere ahead of another summer (and winter?) filled with transfer rumors.