Jose Mourinho has been speaking to the media quite a bit in the past few weeks, and on Saturday, the Chelsea manager spoke about transfer season. Instead of tapping up John Stones, however, he spoke about the Premier League's inability to lure stars from clubs like Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Bayern Munich:
"I think there are only three clubs in the world who have the power to say, 'I don’t sell. [These are] Real Madrid, Barcelona and Bayern Munich. Is anyone in England interested in Thomas Müller? For sure. Can we, England, bring Thomas Müller from Bayern? I don’t think so. Does anyone want [Lionel] Messi? Can you bring him? I don’t think so."
"They are big clubs with big history, economically strong and stable, income amazing. I think they sell when they want to sell. When you see a player leave one of these big clubs you have to think it’s because they want him to go. That’s my feeling. [I’m] speaking about the ones who make the world stop. Big transfers. When does Messi leave Barcelona? When he finishes his career."
So how do Chelsea manage to bring in top talent? Buy them young...
"The way is to bring players like [Sergio] Agüero when Man City bought him or [Eden] Hazard when Chelsea bought him. Try to be lucky and have an Alexis [Sánchez] that is not playing regularly in Barcelona. [Cesc] Fabregas is similar to Alexis, not playing regularly. Arrive at a moment where these top players really want to leave and they force it a little bit."
I've been a big proponent of targeting the top young talent on the world for a long time, which is why I'd be pretty happy with our transfer window if we managed to come away with both Baba Rahman and John Stones, in addition to the squad players we've added. It's nice to hear Mourinho hinting that the club are likely to continue that practice for the foreseeable future, as it makes far too much sense to continue with the club's successful transfer policy.
That said, I'd imagine that both Barcelona and Real Madrid see their ability to retain those player decrease in the coming years, as more equal revenue sharing in Spain won't leave them in as good a position to match the wages top players could earn in an uber-rich England. For the time being, however, luring Messi to Stamford Bridge is probably impossible, as Mourinho says.