After beating Chelsea to the signing of striker Falcao, newly rich Monaco are reportedly looking to continue their massive spending ways by trying to lure Branislav Ivanovic away from Stamford Bridge. Monaco have already spent huge sums signing Falcao, Joao Moutinho and James Rodriguez, and they believe they can convince Chelsea to sell Ivanovic for a fee approaching £25 million pounds. Ivanovic, playing as a centre half under Rafa Benitez has seen his stock rise this year, and both he and David Luiz are now seen as first choice ahead of John Terry. However, a certain someone might have something to say about any proposed transfer. Jose Mourinho is a known fan of Ivanovic, and it is very unlikely that he would be willing to sell a player he so admires. While £25 million pounds is very difficult to turn down, especially for a 29 year old defender, Chelsea don’t need the money. Quite aside from the financial side, where would we find a replacement?
There are few stand out candidates, and the ones that do stand out would carry a price tag equal to anything we might receive from Ivanovic’s sale. We have the opportunity to start the new season with a settled and nicely balanced back four, and it would seem crazy to sell Ivanovic (or Luiz, for that matter) when our defence is showing so much potential. With Azpilicueta continuing his development at right back, we have an extremely promising full back whose best years are ahead of him. At left back, Ashley Cole shows no signs of slowing down yet, and we are reportedly already looking at long term replacements. In central defence, Ivanovic and Luiz combine extremely well in a partnership that has both experience and energy.
Our most impressive central defensive partnership of the last decade was John Terry and Ricardo Carvalho pairing that combined the brawn and outright determination of getting anything on the ball from Terry with the incredible anticipation, tackling and attack-building skills of Carvalho. It was a fearsome partnership, and one that I believe we can replicate with David Luiz and Ivanovic. Now is not the time to be selling players, now is the time to move forward, and to do that we must hold on to Ivanovic.