Willian’s move to Barcelona seems to be off with Barcelona having bought another, younger Brazilian winger in the form of the 21 year-old Malcom from Ligue 1 club, Bordeaux.
Malcom was all set to sign for AS Roma with the Italian club even going as far as to announce the signing on their Twitter account, which has now been deleted.
#ASRoma can confirm that the club has reached an agreement with FC Girondins de Bordeaux for the transfer of #Malcom, subject to the player completing a medical and agreeing personal terms. pic.twitter.com/MHHr6AswYN— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) July 23, 2018
However, Barcelona had other plans and gazumped the Italian club before they could finalize the move. Malcom’s move to Barcelona will cost €41 million plus €1 million in add-ons.
Malcom Transfer Saga:— SPORF (@Sporf) July 24, 2018
Everton & Inter in advanced talks.
Books flight to Rome for medical.
Barca outbid Roma.
✈️ Bordeaux cancel Malcom's flight.
♂️ Roma fans wait at airport.
Roma increase bid.
Barca outbid Roma.
✅ Malcom Signs For Barcelona pic.twitter.com/SvQS1KxhzV
If Chelsea’s intent by rejecting the bids by Barcelona was to keep Willian at all costs, then this is a win, I suppose.
In the off-chance that Chelsea were looking to sell him but we just got too greedy even though Barcelona was already overpaying for a winger who will be 30 next month, then this is an utter failure and it seems that we played ourselves.
In recent years, our club has been great at selling players for a lot of value but it seems we missed the mark this time as now we might be stuck with not only a player whose heart was set on greener pastures and only has two years left on his contract.
Considering how our club’s motto has been to offer one year extension to players over 30 unless in special circumstances like Giroud, now it seems all but certain that we’ll end up letting Willian go for peanuts or at least peanuts as compared to the sum that Barcelona had offered.
Unless of course, Manchester United make a bid for Willian but then this will be akin to Nemanja Matic’s move last summer when he was linked heavily to Juventus but we decided to shoot at our own feet by selling an important player to a league rival instead.
The adverse impact of this move is not over yet as Roma’s alternative to Malcom seems to be possible Chelsea target Leon Bailey. Not to mention the fact that Malcom is the kind of the winger that we should have been chasing from the beginning and we should have been the one gazumping Roma, not Barcelona.
If Willian is staying then with Hazard, Pedro, Willian and Hudson-Odoi in the squad, that should be the end of the Blues’ hunt for a winger in this transfer window especially if that’s what Sarri wants.
However, if we’re still looking to move Willian on there is still a scenario where we can come out on top. We should try and leverage Willian and force Manchester United’s hand into selling us Anthony Martial. Your move, Chelsea.