Reports from earlier today claim Bacary Sagna will leave Arsenal, after seven years at the Emirates Stadium, this summer. However, rather than seeking a move away from the Premier League, the France international will join either Chelsea or Manchester City.
While it’s possible to understand the reasons behind City’s interest - Micah Richards is expected to quit the Etihad Stadium, leaving Manuel Pellegrini with Pablo Zabaleta as his only quality right-back - it’s a lot more tricky to work out why Jose Mourinho is so keen on the 31-year-old.
Sure, Sagna possesses an experienced head and has been one of the Premier League’s best full-backs over the last five or so years, but his best days are behind him. That, though, is not even the biggest reason why Chelsea should not even be considering Sagna as a potential summer signing.
The first thing which should concern Chelsea fans - and Mourinho himself - is Sagna’s reasons for wanting to leave the Gunners. His decision to leave the Emirates Stadium is motivated by money. This is an ageing player seeking an astronomical £100,000-a-week pay day before he finds himself cast onto the scrapheap.
Sagna is not the first player to leave a club because of money - and he certainly won’t be the last, either - but does he really want to be a Chelsea player? That’s a question Mourinho must ask himself before sanctioning a move for the soon-to-be out-of-contract defender.
But there’s an even bigger reason why Mourinho would be crazy to bring Sagna to Stamford Bridge. While Branislav Ivanovic might well be a centre-back by trade, his performances from right-back have been superb in recent seasons. In fact, the Serbia international has performed consistently better than the Arsenal star throughout the last couple of campaigns.
Ivanovic is stronger, quicker, more intelligent and is a whole year younger than his Arsenal counterpart. But even if Mourinho feels Ivanovic no longer deserves to be Chelsea’s first-choice left-back, the Portuguese coach should remind himself that Cesar Azpilicueta is not a left-back, despite his superb displays over the course of the season. The Spaniard, who doesn’t turn 25 until August, is a right-back with an exceptionally bright future ahead of him.
Regardless of how much Sagna wants - whether it’s £100,000-a-week or less - Chelsea shouldn’t pay it. They don’t need him - and the Blues’ faithful should start to worry that Mourinho has lost the plot if a deal is struck to bring the Frenchman to the Bridge this summer.
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