Whether it's in the coming hours, the coming days, or even the coming weeks, Falcao appears to be coming to Stamford Bridge. On loan, most likely, with at least one prospect going the other way, also on loan. There's no stopping this train, so we better hop on and hang on because it's going straight to Titletown. Maybe. I think. I hope. I once ended up in Zurich instead of Venice, but hey, we all make mistakes sometimes.
And I could very well be wrong about Falcao. Perhaps he's more Crespo than Shevchenko, more Eto'o than Torres. Not that we should be looking at repeating the mistakes made with any of those four, but perhaps we'll come out on the "less tragic" end of the scale. Perhaps Falcao truly just needs a supportive environment and some Mourinho magic to find what seems to have disappeared over the past two years of physical and mental injuries. Perhaps there's real hope left in there. Perhaps he makes up for the embarrassment he caused us in the 2012 Super Cup, instead of adding to it. Perhaps perhaps perhaps.
But what I think is troubling me the most is that I cannot figure out how any of this makes good sense for any of the principal parties involved. It does makes complete sense for one person and one person alone: Falcao's agent, Jorge Mendes. If Falcao moves, he gets paid. If Falcao stays put, he doesn't get paid. He gets further exposure either way, but collecting yet another round of agent fees and various percentages of various signing fees and bonuses only happens if Falcao is on the move and is on the move to a lucrative destination like Chelsea. We pay better than 99% of teams out there. Agents love us. Mendes loves us, and Mendes loves Mourinho, too. Mendes will get paid handsomely, even if Falcao turns out to be a flop (again).
But surely, this is not the ideal move for either the player or his parent club. And we're talking a one-year loan to the exact same league where he flopped so spectacularly last season as the move that's likely to happen. This is the riskiest option for both Falcao and Monaco. The prospect of yet another high profile failure is all too real, even if we assume slightly improved performances. His value drops even further. He literally becomes the next Torres, his parent club saddled with a huge contract, his confidence shattered, his prospects just about reduced to zero.
The ridiculous amounts of moneys that Monaco have promised to Atlético Madrid, Falcao, and Falcao's ex-third party owners are going to have to be paid one way or another. As of right now, Monaco do not appear to be able to do so, but contracts (and transfer fees) are guaranteed in professional football, and surely, even if Falcao has the most professional pride in the world, he wouldn't just leave guaranteed millions on the table by agreeing to a mutual termination. The club's creditors won't either. So as far as Monaco are concerned, they need to find the option that puts them under the least amount of financial burden. But not just for right now, for the future as well. They need to put Falcao in the shop window; they need to send him to an easier league than the Premier League. They might have to eat a higher percentage of his contract right now, but if the striker finds success in, say, Italy, his value next summer would be markedly higher than after yet another terrible year in England. They might even be able to sell him and get out from underneath the dark cloud of financial obligations.
Sure, Monaco might have drank the Mourinho Kool-Aid, and gotten sold on the idea of new-Falcao becoming old-Falcao once again in London. It's going to be tremendously hard for Monaco to rid themselves of the striker regardless, so maybe they're hoping this moonshot hits before they have to sell the house, the kids, and the dog, and go live in a trailer down by the river with a broken player and a terrible team once again back in the French second division.
And perhaps Falcao's hoping for the same. He probably is hoping for the same. Pride is usually the last thing to go, and José's Kool-Aid can be ridiculously potent. Falcao could very well even be looking forward to the challenge of competing against the likes of Diego Costa and Loïc Rémy. He may not fully realize just how much better those two guys are. Falcao would be a distant third-choice at the moment and that's hardly a conducive environment towards rediscovering one's self-worth, confidence, and goalscoring ability.
Which then leads us to the question of just why Chelsea would entertain this nonsense in the first place. The time to buy and spend lavishly on Falcao was at least two years ago, if not earlier. Certainly before the ACL injury. Guys, guys, we finally got him! Or is Mourinho petty enough to be personally motivated to succeed where Van Gaal has failed? Is this like bizarro-Shevchenko then? Instead of the owner saddling him with a washed-up striker, he's saddling himself with a washed-up striker? Is Mourinho drinking his own Kool-Aid then, too? At least one thing in this story gets to be potent.
Mourinho does have a bizarre obsession with bringing in veteran strikers of questionable quality. In effect, he chose Eto'o over Lukaku, Drogba over Bamford the last two summers. Lukaku has gone away in the meantime, and now Bamford's constantly being linked with a move away as well. Falcao would certainly fit this pattern, for better or worse, and a strike force of Costa, Rémy, Falcao looks pretty great on paper. With a one-year deal — even if it's not a loan — we have little to lose in terms of finances or FFP. That's not a concern. The concern is the future of Rémy, the future of Bamford, the future of other young players like, say, Bertrand Traoré. Is one year of Falcao adding enough winning value to justify the negatives for other players already in the squad or in the system and ready to contribute? I highly doubt it.
In lieu of a proper conclusion, here's a warning. Off the top of my head, I can remember going on similar rants just twice in recent times, once about keeping Roberto Di Matteo and once about not selling David Luiz. In both cases, the opposite happened within roughly 24 hours. So get those welcome banners ready.