Chelsea may have finished top four, but conceded 54 goals in 38 Premier League matches this season. Whether we need to sort this out by getting a new goalkeeper, new defenders or both, is up for debate. But if we consider former Chelsea prospect Nathan Aké part of the solution, we might have already missed out.
Aké was unable to prevent Bournemouth from being relegated after five season in the top flight, but he’s not expected to follow the team down to the second division. Cashing in on him may in fact be essential to keeping the Cherries from financial dire straits.
There were reports earlier they they would even sell Aké at a cut-rate price, but it sounds like Manchester City missed those as they made a £41m bid to purchase the Dutch international.
Bournemouth ain’t no fools and they duly accepted the offer, likely with a huge smile on their faces. Chelsea could make City’s job harder by activating the £40m buy-back clause we (might) have on Aké, but that might be more than we’re willing to pay for a player whose team were just sent back to the Championship. (Ed.note: Gary Cahill once arrived under similar circumstances, but for a fifth of the price, for example.)
And Aké may not be the only move City make. Guardiola wants more defenders, and since FFP is dead (temporarily at least, but City are teflon anyway) City might go after Atlético Madrid’s José Giménez as well.
ESPN claims that City, just like Chelsea, are big admirers of the 25-year old whose wealth of experience in Uruguay and Spain make him more “like signing a 30-year old”. It also gives him a €120m release clause, which is patently ridiculously, but the well of good defenders available in the transfer market is very shallow and already running dry.
Better act quick!