Neymar’s arrival to Chelsea would feel like something out of the Roman Abramovich era. A superstar, especially one towards the conclusion of his career, arrives at Stamford Bridge.
Under Abramovich, the Blues have a bad track record of buying targets years after their peak years have passed.
Although the Brazilian superstar would draw attention and certainly shatter social media, giving Chelsea’s new ownership group led by Todd Bohely the “marquee signing,” any desire to make a statement should be evaluated against where the club went wrong in Abramovich’s last years.
Despite a supposed connection between Thomas Tuchel and Neymar during their time together at PSG, Romelu Lukaku’s troubles should serve as a good example of what the Blues must avoid.
That is, even before you consider the absurd financial terms of a contract for a player with Neymar’s reputation. His £200 million trade from Barcelona to PSG in 2017 is the most expensive ever.
With weekly compensation of half a million dollars, even if the player’s marketability is obvious, this would sabotage such objectives from the start, even if the player’s marketability is plain.
If Chelsea is to compete with Liverpool and Manchester City in the transfer window, they will require competence. Because of FSG’s transfer policy, players like Neymar and Kylian Mbappe are unlikely to come close to Anfield, but it doesn’t mean you can’t discover a transformational talent to boost your system.
The 30-year-old has only played 22 league games for PSG this season and has a long history of injuries. The money spent on his salaries would be better spent on other players in Chelsea’s roster who are more suited to the team’s style of play.
Given his contract predicament with Barcelona and the profile of the winger giving something fresh to Chelsea’s faltering attack, pursuing a younger name Tuchel likes in Ousmane Dembele would be a better play if Tuchel and the new hierarchy are determined on a new attacker.
A defensive midfielder, a new centre-back or wingback protection for Ben Chilwell and Reece James, and a new defensive midfielder all seem more important than a huge outlay.
Despite all of the trophies won during the Abramovich era, one lesson the current period should learn is not to squander money on individuals who simply harm the team’s chemistry, even if that player was regarded as one of the continent’s greatest.
PSG’s continuous failures in the Champions League indicate that systems transcend superstars, despite their refusal to stop establishing new transfer records.
Chelsea must exercise caution. Years of huge market errors must be relegated to the past. Tuchel’s team would fall farther behind if he went all out for Neymar.