It's almost as if an entire summer's worth of pent up transfer window frustrations are all being let loose at once. The dam broke when Pedro Rodríguez chose to fly to London instead of Manchester to put pen-to-paper on his Chelsea contract. Now, the madness, the hype, the hopes, and the dreams are flooding the landscape.
Chelsea aren't done in the market just yet. They have £100m earmarked for a pair of marquee signings. Transfer Talk: http://t.co/fEStsrdeR2— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) August 21, 2015
Stories like that one from ESPN have been popping up everywhere over the past day or so. The most common version includes Paul Pogba and John Stones as the marquee pair. The stories had simmered along on the pages of the Star and Metro for a short while before, but now they've spread to more reputable outlets as well. And not just in the form of transfer round-ups. Here's one from the Independent, for example. You cannot stop the signal, Mal.
Of course, it was just a few weeks ago that Mourinho likened Pogba to the Eiffel Tower: highly desirable but pretty much unobtainable. Meanwhile, Everton are doing their best to hang on to Stones by pricing out potential suitors. However, if we're looking for signs of hope for making such a game-changing signing as Pogba, we only have to look to the just-completed Pedro transfer. Sure, we had been linked with the ex-Barcelona man before, but we pulled it all off in less than 48 hours. There's a good chance that this urgency was brought on by our poor start to the season.
Our theme all summer (and leading up to it) was to not spend big, to not bring in any big names unless somebody else leaves. Words like loyalty, stability, building from within, promoting youth were thrown around with regularity. We pointed out how others were buying to catch up and challenge for the title. It's not that we couldn't afford to match their spending, we simply chose not to do it.
Now, the £20m+ spent on Pedro will mean at least one departure (Cuadrado? Moses?). Pedro's not a replacement; he will force somebody else to move out. He runs contrary to the summer's theme, which very well could explain the sudden torrent of big money rumors. In addition to Stones (£40m?), there's Pogba (£70m?), and Anthony Martial (€55m?), and Antoine Griezmann (€80m?) ... suddenly, nothing's off limits.
Are we panicking? Maybe. But if panicking results in a game-changer that helps us catch up with the rest of the big spenders this summer, than I say, let's panic! Panic now! Panic Pogba! Gimme.