Radamel Falcao seems likely to be lining up for Chelsea in the Premier League next season.
The Colombian forward, 29, is inching towards a move back to England after Manchester United declined their option to sign the AS Monaco striker permanently for a reported $60 million after he spent the 2014-15 campaign on loan at Old Trafford.
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In the UK Sky Sports is reporting that the deal is completed, while the BBC and various other outlets in claim that the deal is still being finalize but is close to completion. Monaco can’t afford to keep Falcao around and would rather loan him out once again as his four-year deal still has two years remaining, while the player has no intention of returning to the Ligue 1 outfit who bought him for $80 million from Atletico Madrid back in 2013.
Falcao scored just four times in 29 appearances for United as Louis van Gaal left the former Atletico and FC Porto striker on the bench for much of the second half of the season. However, Chelsea’s boss Jose Mourinho recently spoke of his displeasure at the way Falcao was treated at United last season and had the following to say about a potential move for the man they call “El Tigre” back in Colombia.
“If I can help Falcao reach his level again, I will do it,” Mourinho said. “It hurts me that people in England think that the real Falcao is the one we saw at Manchester United.”
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So, with Chelsea needing a forward after Didier Drogba’s departure over the summer and only Loic Remy around to support the magnificent but injury-prone Diego Costa, Falcao’s potential arrival for the reigning PL champions will significantly bolster their attacking options for the 2015-16 season.
Signing him on a season-long loan from Monaco is a little bit of a gamble after his season of struggle in 2014-15 at United but given the fact that he has something to prove and may get plenty more minutes with Chelsea, Falcao’s arrival in west London could be a masterstroke from Mourinho. He is a true predator in and around the box — 142 goals in 178 games for Porto and Atletico will give you that reputation — and if he can link up with Eden Hazard, Oscar and Cesc Fabregas then it could add at least another 15-20 goals to Chelsea’s forward line who missed Costa badly for large stretches of last season but still eased to the PL title.
Many believe the Colombia national team captain has never fully recovered from rupturing his left ACL in January 2014 but it looks like he will get a chance to once again showcase his talents in the PL next season.
Falcao is currently in action for Colombia at the Copa America tournament but his side face an uphill task of qualifying for the knockout stages after a shock 1-0 defeat to Venezuela in their Group C opener.