Following his debut reds, Joao Felix has quickly become Chelsea’s most significant goal threat. The Portuguese has provided a new threat to the misfiring forward line that has scored 41 goals from 37 games in all competitions this year.
Should now the big question for this summer window will be whether the Blues’ should get the player on a permanent deal at the end of this season?
Money is not a problem for Todd Boehly as evident from his splash in the last two transfer windows. The American billionaire managed to spend more money than La Liga (£25m), Serie A (£25m), Bundesliga (£60m), and Ligue 1 (£110m) in the January transfer window. And according to Jacob Steinberg from the Guardian, this spending does not look to come to a halt with the club looking to buy more attacking players this summer. A lot of outgoings are bound to happen this summer and will the incomings include an on-loan Joao Felix remains to be seen.
According to reports from various outlets, Atletico Madrid wants around £80 million if Joao wants to leave this summer. Let’s have a look at the pros and cons of this deal if it were to happen:
Felix is a highly skillful and technical player who is capable of playing in multiple positions and can carry out various roles for his team. With S.L Benfica, Joao played as a second striker in a 4–4–2 formation, where he linked up the midfield with the attack, also he created opportunities for the team’s main striker, while also being given the freedom to make runs into the box and score goals himself while in Madrid, Simeone deployed him as a winger on either flanks or the second striker in the team’s 4–4–2 formation.
Joao has the ability to make the fans get up their seats and make them say ‘How the hell did he do that?’, something Chelsea have missed since the days of a player called Eden Hazard. His ability to play in the final third in those tight spaces where opposition defenders have covered up the ground have left little room for wiggle is where Felix is doing a great job of either setting up his teammates or making an attempt himself. He has struck a good understanding with Kai Havertz and the German looks decent with the Portuguese on the pitch.
Also, the player has quickly settled in London stating how happy he is on multiple occasions and the noise around his camp seems to be that as well.
If we have a look at his FBRef numbers we could see the four metrics stand out more than the other ones. Progressive Carries, Progressive Passes, Shot Creating Actions and Successful Take-Ons all pointing to Joao’s exceptional attacking ability we talked about.
Probably the biggest factor that goes into whether this deal could be permanent or not is the price tag.
Todd Boehly did get around the Financial Fair Play model by amortizing the lengths of contracts of all the new players signed by the club in these two transfer windows. So it allowed the club to spend more and get more players but recently UEFA are discussing the FFP rules to now limit the length of amortization to five years so big clubs like Chelsea don’t go on spending crazy amounts of money. The Blues will want to be clever from here on if they want to rebuild a squad capable of competing domestically and on a European level.
Chelsea’s acquisition of Christopher Nkunku who is joining in the summer from RB Leipzig will mean three or four forwards will have to be moved on this summer, and with the clubs not exactly spending big chunks of money shifting these players will be an uphill battle.
Also, we spoke about Chelsea’s lack of goal scorers this season, with Havertz topping the charts with 9 goals in all competitions, the club will need more convincing from Felix who has managed to score four in 14 appearances. Joao, being a creative player has never managed to score goals in large numbers with six, seven, eight, and four being his goal return in La Liga in the past three and a half seasons.
My opinion on this matter would be Chelsea should first sell the players they don’t want anymore at the club. Players such as Kepa or Mendy (one of them), César Azpilicueta, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Christian Pulisic, Hakim Ziyech, Romelu Lukaku and a bit controversially Kai Havertz need to be shifted before deciding on incomings at the club and also whether they want Graham Potter to continue to lead this Chelsea team in the future also needs to be cleared.
Although if its about bringing Felix to Stamford Bridge, the footballing pros out-shadow the cons by a mile – but as I earlier stated, much is dependent on the money Atleti are asking for him…