Why Chelsea would be way overpaying for Juventus star
Even in the context of the pound sterling’s current post-Brexit plight, £60m of them seems like a ridiculous amount for Chelsea to consider paying Juventus for Leonardo Bonucci’s signature.
That is the rumoured war chest required to prise the Italian international away from the Turin club in January, as Blues boss Antonio Conte looks to renew acquaintances.
However, using previous yardsticks it seems quite ludicrous that Chelsea smash the world-record transfer fee for a defender by £10m, even if Bonucci carries a Rolls Royce reputation in his particular niche.
The two most expensive defenders to date are both already playing in the Premier League, yet David Luiz’s rather left-field move back to Chelsea this summer, for £12m less than the record £50m Paris St-Germain forked out just two years earlier, means there is a better comparison to the Brazilian.
John Stones cost Manchester City £47m during the same transfer window and the 22-year-old Englishman has to be the best benchmark to base Bonucci’s valuation on.
Using the broader sample size of last season when the Juve man played 36 games to the then Evertonian’s 33 in their respective top flights, there are very few defensive stats where the Italian comes out on top.
According to the bods at Squawka.com Stones trumps his counterpart in tackles won and tackles lost, aerial and total duels won, pass completion percentages (89 – 87%) and successful take-ons.
The five-time Serie A winner does lead the way in clearances (160 – 139), yet in two more games this season, Stones leads the way 33-16.
If experience counts, then at 29 and boasting runners-up medals at both Euro 2012 and the 2014/15 Champions League on his glittering CV, Bonucci is the clear laurels taker.
However, the heralded City operative has almost exactly seven years on him, meaning his performance levels are only heading one way.
All things considered, £60m seems way over the odds even for a player with a bigger rep than his stats suggest.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing