About Me

Hi I'm Tom, a 24 year sports fan. I like almost all sports but in particular football, and in particular Chelsea FC. Other favourites are F1, golf, rugby union and cricket. In this blog I will attempt to cover any football topics that tickle my fancy including reviews of the past weeks action and any big stories, and I will try to be as un-biased as I possibly can (although we all know how hard this is when talking about your own team!). It is not my intention to provide updates on football news as this is readily available, but rather to provide some in depth review of the English Premier League (games, players, transfers) as well as praising excellent performances, decisions and games in general. I hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Deadline day madness

So the transfer window has finally snapped shut and what looked to be shaping up to be a fairly drab period exploded on the final day with well over £100m worth of footballer changing hands.

Until the final day Edin Dzeko’s move from Wolfsburg to Manchester City looked to be the headline of the month. Roman Abramovich clearly had other ideas. With over £20m shelled out on Benfica defender David Luiz and an alleged £50m being wired to Liverpool for Fernando Torres, the direct knock on was Liverpool paying £35m for Andy Carroll. Both broke the British transfer record (with Carroll signing before Torres).

This is clearly bonkers money and there have been claims in the media regarding how we are supposed to be in a recession etc etc. Now I’m now economist but all this spending isn’t necessarily a bad thing is it? (Putting aside the fact that the £50m for Torres was Abromovich’s personal money and if he ever decides to call back in these “loans” Chelsea could be in deep doggy doo-doo). All of those transfers had tax associated with them so the economy has benefited from them. The money that Liverpool paid Newcastle has been funded directly from the sale of another player. Essentially, Mr Abramovich has pumped £50m into the British economy and it has changed hands a couple of times, with tax being paid on each occasion. If he has the money to spend then fair enough.

As for the question of who, out of Liverpool and Chelsea, did better out of the transfer window is an interesting one as there were external factors. Looking at the delta, Liverpool brought in Luis Suarez and Andy Carroll at the expense of £8m and Torres. I would say that their squad looks better now than it did last week. Liverpool have been crying out for a quality second striker. Admittedly it was to support Torres but they do now have two class acts. Or are they? They are both young and questions remain over attitude and temperament in both cases but there is no doubt that both players have the tools to be successful.

Chelsea on the other hand have gained Torres and Luiz at the cost of around £71m. The question here is based purely on value. I tend to side with the opinion that if Ronaldo is worth £80m then Torres is worth £50m. Last season he was the most clinical striker in the Premiership, and by that I mean that he converted the highest percentage of shooting opportunities into goals. Chelsea, on the other hand (and I don’t have the stats on this) create more chances than most of the other teams in the Premiership. Last night for instance against Sunderland, Chelsea manufactured 14 shots on target with 7 off target. This does not include blocked shots. It is not too much of a stretch of the imagination to see that Torres should get the opportunity to score plenty of goals for Chelsea.

Ultimately the value will be determined by the numbers of goals that Torres scores and the success that that brings the team. However, with the Man Utd machine rumbling it is beginning to look ominous.

David Luiz is not a player that I know a great deal about but I know that he is very highly rated, can play anywhere across the back line and is a full International. He also has all of the physical attributes to be a success in England and, most importantly in my opinion, is young. As mentioned before in this blog, I do not go along with the idea that Chelsea have an ageing squad. There are some (possibly too many) players over 30 but there are also a significant number of players under the age of 21. These will take time to bed in and in a couple of years, when McEachran et al are 19/ 20/ 21, Luiz and Torres will be 25 and 28 and we will start to see the fruits from the academy form into a potent team.

Time will tell…

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