A little over 12 months ago, Juan Cuadrado arrived at Stamford Bridge for a cool €30m, filling a spot left open by the departures of Mohamed Salah and André Schürrle. It turned out however, the Cuadrado was not only nowhere near as good as those two combined, he was quite possibly worse than any one-half of either of the two. For reasons well beyond our comprehension, things never quite got going for him and the club quickly pulled the plug.
The 27-year-old winger had plenty of residual value left still when he joined Juventus on loan this summer, and the initially reported buy-option fee for him was in the €25m range. But despite his initial successes, Juventus were no fools and knew that they had time and leverage to wait for a better deal. They could've bought in the fall (around the same time Roma made Salah's loan permanent), but they decided to wait. They could've bought in January, with the price still hovering around €20m, but they decided to wait some more. And so we arrive in February, with still no sale agreed and the price now almost half of what the original "gentleman's agreement" supposedly was.
The latest report out of Italy, albeit only CalcioMercato, has Cuadrado's potential sale price down to just €14-15m. But with Juventus holding all the cards, including Cuadrado's apparent desire to stay at The Old Lady, there's not much Chelsea can do other than nod and smile and sign on the dotted line.