Valencia’s financial troubles in the past few years have led to them becoming a provider of talent for numerous clubs at the top table of European football. David Villa, David Silva and Juan Mata have all left the Mestalla in order to ease the financial noose around the clubs neck.
With Chelsea (and any other club with money to burn) heavily linked with Radamel Falcao and Edinson Cavani, my question is, would Chelsea do better to return to Los Che and enquire about Roberto Soldado?
I can feel the eyebrows being raised already. Cavani and Falcao have both scored more goals than Soldado this season. True. But lest we forget that Valencia had an awful first half of the season under Mauricio Pellegrino and have only recently moved back into Champions League contention, whereas Napoli and Atletico both sit second in their respective leagues.
The superiority of the Uruguayan and the Colombian’s respective teams is reflected in the amount of shots they have on average per game. In all competitions Soldado averages 2.3 shots per game, while Falcao has 3.7 and Cavani 4.1.
Any regular La Liga views will know just how we acquainted the Spaniard is with the back of the net. Anybody left doubting might want to take a look at his last weekend against Levante in the Valencia derby. Soldado will score goals, don’t worry about that.
His lethality in front of goal is not the only reason I believe the Valencia hitman would be an astute purchase for Chelsea, however. It has been well documented that Falcao’s release clause is £48m, a lot of money and a heavy burden on a player. There’s a former Atletico striker already in west London who can vouch for that one.
Cavani’s situation is less straight forward. Aurelio De Laurentiis is renowned for being a tiresome negotiator, and has cited a fee of €100m –several British tabloids have similarly suggested a fee of over £50m may be required to attain the idol of the Neapolitans.
Soldado’s release fee is not public information currently, but it is rumoured to be at around €30m. However, with Valencia’s record of selling their better players for a fee below their potential market value, surely it would be worth an enquiry by the Blues?
Whether Chelsea will make an approach for the man who has four goals in six caps for Spain is an entirely different issue, and if track record is anything to go by, we’ll see Roman looking to secure the more illustrious of the strikers discussed here.
But in my opinion, Chelsea would do well to look at Soldado. At 27-years-old he is the same age as Falcao and a year older than Cavani, markedly cheaper, and significantly, if Chelsea weren’t to secure Champions League football next season, Soldado’s interest would probably be greater than the South Americans, bearing in mind Falcao’s father has made no attempt to hide his son’s desire to make the move across the Spanish capital to Real Madrid, whilst Cavani has spoken of the Napoli fans as his second family.
Worth a thought Roman, surely?
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