“El Tigre” will call Stamford Bridge home for the 2015-16 season.
Radamel Falcao has joined reigning Premier League champions Chelsea, with the 29-year-old Colombian striker adding significant firepower to Jose Mourinho’s attack.
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But which Falcao will show up? The lethal predtaor we saw devour opposition defenses on a weekly basis at FC Porto and Atletico Madrid or the frustrated striker who suited up for Manchester United last season?
Falcao’s ill-fated loan spell with Manchester United last season yielded just four goals in 29 appearances and the Red Devils decided to not buy him permanently from parent club AS Monaco. But following the horrific ACL injury to his left knee in January 2014, many believe he only needs a consistent run of games to get back to his best.
Falcao has been handed a shot at redemption in the Premier League and Chelsea, via a release on their official website, are pretty happy to have him on loan from Monaco next season.
“Chelsea Football Club is delighted to announce we have agreed terms with Monaco for the season-long loan of Radamel Falcao. The Colombian international will link up with Jose Mourinho’s squad for the 2015-16 campaign.”
On signing for Chelsea, Falcao will link up with three former teammates at Atletico — Diego Costa, Filipe Luis and Thibaut Courtois — as well as fellow countryman Juan Cuadrado.
“I am very happy to be joining Chelsea,” Falcao said. “And I can’t wait to start training and help with our aim of retaining the league title and being successful in Europe.”
With Didier Drogba out of the picture and Loic Remy unsure whether he wants to remain warming the bench at Stamford Bridge next season, Mourinho desperately needed another striker on board who could step in for Costa whenever the Spanish international is missing. Falcao, if he regains his sharpness and touch in front of goal following a frustrating season at United last year, can become more than a fill-in for Costa.
Mourinho has previously spoken about his admiration for Falcao, saying he wanted to give him a chance to flourish if he could.
“It hurts me that people in England think that the real Falcao is the one we saw at Manchester United,” Mourinho said.
Now, Falcao has the chance to repay the faith Mourinho has shown in him. If this transfer comes off, Mourinho and Chelsea will look like masterminds for taking a punt on the Colombian forward who has seen his reputation as one of the great poachers in world soccer take a hit over the past 12 months.
With Eden Hazard, Willian, Oscar and Cesc Fabregas laying chances on a plate for you every single game, Falcao couldn’t have landed in a better place in terms of getting chances to score. That’s something that couldn’t exactly be said for United for most of last season. Now, all he has to do is put the ball in the back of the net and prove his predatory instincts are still intact.