A Blue Essien

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Everything posted by A Blue Essien

  1. No doubt. And yes, we'll know soon enough about Van Dijk. I think we have an interest, but it remains to be seen how serious it is.
  2. I disagree MT. I think Law, Fifield, and Simon Johnson have a direct line with the club, especially when we want to push an agenda. When all the rubbish regarding Conte was coming out, the aforementioned 3 put things right the following day, all with the same story, all within a few minutes/hours of each other. It came across as a club press release, and there have been previous instances of similar releases. I could be wrong of course, especially with the plethora of transfer fluff that gets floated around, but it certainly seems to me that those 3 in particular often get briefed by the club with the same information.
  3. Seems like we're pocketing about £3m for Salah. Will add that to my previous list of funds generated. I had also forgotten about Begovic! So, once again, not including Oscar (or Bamford for that matter): Cuadrado: £17m (confirmed) Atsu: £6m (confirmed) Begovic: £10m (confirmed) Solanke: £3-10m (rumoured) Izzy Brown: £8m (rumoured) Bertrand Traore: £17m (rumoured) Costa: £30-40m (estimated) Salah: £3m (rumoured) So that's anywhere between £95-£105m. And that's before any potential further sales of Kalas, Piazon, Pasalic, Miazga, Nathan, Omeruo, Remy or Van Ginkel. Could be a record summer this, both ins and outs.
  4. Seeing as the interest in Bonucci or Van Dijk has been transmitted by the usual suspects (Matt Law & Dominic Fifield) who are often our mouthpieces, I think there certainly is a genuine interest here. Agree that we don't necessarily need a CB and funds would be better served elsewhere, but if it's what Conte wants, I'm happy for the board to oblige. Yes, agree with this. Bonucci/Van Dijk, Sandro, Bakayoko, and Lukaku will, as you mention, most likely go straight into the first team. Overpriced or not, that will immediately improve the quality of the squad, and that's all you can ask for. And yes, if it's what Conte has asked for, we have to back the man. The board has certainly brought in a lot of quality, but as we've seen in previous years I would not trust them in terms of quantity. They often strip down the squad in the latter days of the window. Let's hope they don't do the same again.
  5. Looks like a contract extension is just around the corner. A big thanks to all the rags trying to stir things up!
  6. Great posts. Couldn't agree more. I think we're almost certainly targeting a CM, ST, and most likely an AM as well, to go with Sandro. IMO, Bakayoko is a done deal, just waiting to be announced, so that sorts out the CM. Lukaku, as well, will be pursued and landed. It remains to be seen who the AM is. Don't think we need another CB with Christensen arriving. Also, with the possible addition of Sandro, it could mean Alonso becomes an option at LCB, thereby increasing our numbers. I really hope we keep Ake as well, so think we're sorted there. As for numbers, the in's will probably cost around £200m: Sandro: £55M Bakayoko: £35M Lukaku: £75M Caballero: Free AM: £35M In terms of what we can recoup, let's not include Oscar: Cuadrado: £17m (confirmed) Atsu: £6m (confirmed) Solanke: £3-10m (rumoured) Izzy Brown: £8m (rumoured) Bertrand Traore: £17m (rumoured) Costa: £30-40m (estimated) Have I missed anyone? That's anywhere between £80m-100m that should be recouped. And that doesn't include the potential sales of Kalas, Piazon, Pasalic, Miazga, Nathan, Omeruo, Remy or Van Ginkel among others. Reckon it's his agent stirring things up by including us as the bogeyman. No better way to force a contract offer.
  7. Great post. Seems an interesting option but I'm reluctant to believe much coming out of Italy because of the obvious Conte connection. He's the very definition of a fan boy. It's utterly embarrassing. IMO, Fabregas is the least likely to leave. He's continuously stated how happy and settled he is in London. He has a big family, lots of kids, and a long history in the city. With CL this season, he's probably going to play more so I don't see him being put on the market and I certainly don't see him angling for a move.
  8. It's not horrific, as we should be winning our home games, but it's quite tricky, especially without Hazard for the first month or so. The rest of the way is pretty good though so if we're there or thereabouts after the first 7 games, we'll be in good shape.
  9. Finally all the friendlies and qualifiers are done with and I expect a rash of signings to commence. I reckon Caballero and Bakayoko will be sealed within the next week. Lukaku will follow, but not before Everton confirm a few signings of their own. It remains to be seen who we target after those 3.
  10. He's certainly not worth a 100m and I doubt he'll go for that. IMO, it'll be around the 70-80m range. That's still overpriced but such is the market, especially for goals. I think we need quality. We've made the mistake in the past of settling for adequacy and I really hope we don't do that this summer. Rahman is in the same boat Zouma was in going into last season. He'll hardly be usable. Kenedy isn't trusted at all. When's the last time Todd Kane played a full season? Our wingbacks go through more work than anyone else on the pitch and they're one of the most important positions. We need 4 quality, interchangeable options and if that means we need to splash the cash, then so be it.
  11. Disagree. Torres and Sheva were all but finished when they arrived. Lukaku is still on the way up. This. I think we desperately need quality additions at WB. In a long season we need interchangeable options with no drop in quality. Technically we could alternate Moses and Azpi at RWB, but we need another option at LWB. it may as well be a quality option. Indeed. I expect Bakayoko to be all but announced this week with attention then shifting to Lukaku. That sorts out CM and ST, with a GK, LWB and potentially another AM remaining.
  12. IMO, we definitely need to buy and that's even if we hold on to Traore. The options are limited though. Doubt Alexis is realistic so that leaves a trio of left-footers in Mahrez, Rodriguez or Douglas Costa.
  13. Yeah, just the 3 friendlies before the Community Shield. That seems way too little. Surely we'll add a few more? Maybe we can squeeze one in before we head to Asia.
  14. I rate Batshuayi, so yes I think that's enough. If for some reason both are unavailable we can always go with the Hazard, Pedro, Willian triumvirate which, whilst not ideal, has looked pretty good in the past. That's assuming Traore isn't with us as he could easily stand in as the 3rd striker. He'd only be available from January and would be on massive wages so I'd probably stay clear. I wouldn't go after Coentrao. Barely played for years now and I wouldn't bet on him excelling in the league. As for Kenedy, I think it's pretty obvious he doesn't have a future here. Conte's barely played him and that was when we had already won the league. I reckon he'll be off. Apparently we've bid for Alex Sandro who's a quality player and after Mendy would be the one I'd go after.
  15. Fair enough, you certainly stick to your guns. Personally I think we're fine as is, especially with Christensen to supplement the group. Additionally, and I've been thinking about this, I reckon Alonso would be a very interesting option as a backup LCB. He has all the attributes to succeed there; great in the air, good on the ball, can shift out to wider areas. That allows us to bring in an explosive LWB like Mendy or Sandro who can compete with Alonso and also allow us on occasion to play Alonso as a LCB. I reckon that sorts out a number of issues. Super cup against Bayern. Yeah, he came on late and really didn't do any pressing up top. Was a disappointing cameo and as you said, may have made up JM's mind (the penalty miss didn't help either). Yes, will be closer to 80m I reckon. Lukaku has all but burned his bridges at Everton. They're still going to dig in but this ones looks a formality IMO. Yes, we've made mistakes in the past in regards to not installing buy-back clauses and I understand that going forward we're going to insist on it. I believe Thorgan Hazard has one and have read rumours that we'll install one in case we sell Traore. Agreed. I would have preferred Costa to stay and spend his best years here, but I can see why Conte has got fed up. Costa's a very volatile and difficult personality. He's almost childlike really and is prone to a tantrum at any point. He's wanted out on previous occasions and I don't think Conte felt he had his complete trust and that's obviously very important to him. It's a pity, because he's a quality player, but I can see why Conte has taken a stand. As for Lukaku, I'm coming around to it. I don't think he suits our style particularly, especially in regards to work rate and his hold up and combination play, but he does the most thing well which is score goals. His numbers compared to equivalent age groups/number of games hold up to the best that have played the game. You know what you're going to get with him and theoretically he should only get better.
  16. Indeed. Yes, if Mendy's still on the market, we should be all in for him. I want him almost as much as I wanted Kante last year. Good post. Agree with all of this. Yup. Lukaku, IMO, has agreed to join us. Now it's up to the clubs to hammer out a price. I reckon that means Costa is off, likely back to Atletico. Whether that's this summer (and he registers with them in the winter) or in January remains to be seen. Zaffo, you continue to stress about height, even though 2 of the 3 are above 6 foot and the third is arguably the best 1v1 defender on the planet. As a hypothetical, if we had Luiz, Cahill, and Cannavaro as the three CB'S would you want to replace Cannavaro due to his height? Honest question. And yes, I would put a significant amount of trust in Christensen. IMO he's one of the most talented young defenders in the world. Again, IMO, if he belonged to Borussia, you could be sure that Bayern would be in for him and I wouldn't be surprised if he was starting at Bayern aged 23 with an asking price of 60mp. If you can't put trust in someone like Christensen then you may as well close down the entire youth/loan system. Yes. I'm a huge Ake fan. I think he's a cracking player. Unfortunately I think he wants to play regularly and we'll be moving him on.
  17. Lukaku has more or less confirmed that he's leaving. Reckon it's either us or Man Utd.
  18. You don't, but Conte does: 'We have two systems, 4-2-4 and 3-4-3. When I switched to this system, I felt it was a good fit for our players. We do not lose offensively but we are better defensively. We found players not to adapt, but to play in different roles compared to the past. Like Azpi, he is incredible in this new role. He is one of the best in the world in this role.' http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-4271344/Cesar-Azpilicueta-one-best-says-Antonio-Conte.html
  19. Apparently it's £60m and 200k a week. Insane numbers. I wouldn't pay that even if we desperately needed a CB, which we don't. Yes, the WB's are the primary concern as we need proper cover and ideally players of similar quality to push internal competition. And whilst I'm not that concerned about City (primarily because I don't think Pep can set them up with a balance) the links to Mendy are concerning. He's a real beast and would improve them no end. The likes of Silva, Sane, Jesus, and potentially Mendy are all 23 and younger and will set them up for a long time to come. Echoes of their 2010 summer when they landed SIlva and Toure. Would love to hijack the Mendy deal. Yes, may as well give up now. The end is nigh. We already have 3 starters in the 28-31 age group. Having the likes of Ake or Christensen to come in when one of them is out is how it should be IMO. Bringing in another experienced option will just block their path. And Ake and Christensen are hardly inexperienced now are they? They've both had two full seasons in the top flight and have excelled. It's about time to take them seriously.
  20. Keeping a 3 month recovery period in mind, he should be back in training by early September and hopefully involved in games by mid-late September. With the international break coming just a few games into the season, he shouldn't miss more than 3-5 games, I hope. The positive is that he gets a nice long break to recharge which will hold him in good stead for what will be a long and arduous season. Additionally, this also means that we have to supplement the AM position as we can't go into the season with just Pedro and Willian. Whether that means we hold on to Traore or bring someone else in remains to be seen.
  21. Am expecting another quiet week before it all really kicks off next week once the friendlies/qualifiers are over. Conte should be back from his holiday as well, as the planning for next season gets underway.
  22. This. Griezmann's pretty much come out and said he's staying. He's not going anywhere this summer. Nailed it. Honestly, I think it's because no one really cares about City. They don't elicit strong feelings, one way or the other. Completely disagree. Hazard is a very special player. One of the most talented players and best dribblers I've ever seen in my life. Enjoy him while you can because whenever he does go, we're going to really, really miss him. First name Corentin. Second name Tolisso. That's a great name to be fair. Sign him up for that alone.
  23. Yes, and apparently Lyon are in talks with Traore for somewhere between £15-20m. On a related note, apparently we've shown interest in Tolisso. Know very little about him, but he's highly rated. Yes, I don't see how Llorente fits the model. SFL was also scathing in his criticism of him and in particular his work rate and I think he knows a thing or two about that. I think it'll be closer to £40m, but I see your point regarding the one good season which could well be the outlier. Personally, I'd just like us to buy another AM, especially if Traore's on his way out and I don't see anyone else good enough within the league (assuming that the rest of the top 6 won't sell to us). £61m ain't cheap for a soon to be 28 year old. Got to keep in mind the insane wages he'll be on as well.
  24. As for Mahrez, I'd consider it. He's very talented and would offer a bit of variety being left-footed. Often he's the only creative outlet for Leicester and has been regularly double and triple teamed. He'd get a lot less attention here and would be a potent foil to Hazard. If we're thinking of selling Traore to Lyon, I'd definitely be looking at bringing in another AM and if Sanchez isn't available, we could do a lot worse than Mahrez. Other alternatives would be James Rodriguez or Douglas Costa. I'd love Griezmann but if he's leaving Atletico he's Man Utd bound.
  25. With Begovic gone for at least 10m, I make that close to 100m in sales since Jan 2017: Oscar: 60m Begovic: 10m Atsu: 6m Cuadraro: 17m Bamford: 6m That's a whole lot of dosh and I don't think we're done yet as we're likely to see a few more loanees sold off.