Pat Nevin says Cristiano Ronaldo would be a worse fit than Romelu Lukaku at Chelsea and said his former club should instead be chasing a midfielder to “make a massive difference”.
Jorge Mendes has been desperately trying to find Ronaldo a new club after the Portugal international told Manchester United he doesn’t fancy playing for them anymore as he wants Champions League football.
The ‘family issues’ preventing Ronaldo from attending preseason training appear now to have been sorted out as Mendes joined him on a jolly to Carrington on Tuesday to discuss his future with United.
He’s set for talks with new manager Erik ten Hag who has previously said the 37-year-old is “not for sale” and “in our plans”, which is lucky for Ronaldo because his desire to leave has been met with a complete lack of interest from potential suitors.
Chelsea owner Todd Boehly reportedly held a meeting with Ronaldo and Mendes, but Thomas Tuchel has turned down the opportunity to have the striker at his disposal.
And Blues legend Nevin reckons Tuchel’s right to steer clear as, like with Lukaku, Ronaldo would require him to “throw his style of play out the window”.
Nevin told BonusCodeBets: “I think Ronaldo would be even more of a poor fit than Lukaku was for Chelsea. When Lukaku signed last season, people thought he would be the missing link but I thought by signing him, Thomas Tuchel was throwing his style of play out the window, if indeed it was Thomas who signed him! It didn’t make sense to me.
“While Ronaldo scores a lot of goals, off the ball you are almost playing with ten men which you cannot do in the Premier League and be competitive. Some Chelsea fans may love it, but there have been some cases over the years around Chelsea which have made them look like a circus.”
*For my money, Michy Batshuayi is the juggler, Gonzalo Higuain is a prime human cannonball, Alvaro Morata the mime and Lukaku, obviously, the human statue.*
“If they are trying to catch Man City, they can’t be a circus. If he is going to join, he has to be told he won’t play every game and may only play 45 minutes but he has to work for the team. If he does, he could then be a brilliant signing for Chelsea.”
Nevin, like us (and everyone else), believes third is the best Chelsea can hope for, though a move for £150m Declan Rice would “make a massive difference”.
He added: “I think Chelsea will finish between third and sixth. It might sound negative but Liverpool and Man City did phenomenal business and did it so far ahead. There is no embarrassment in finishing behind them though as they are two of the greatest teams ever in Premier League history.
“If Chelsea could get Declan Rice, it would make a massive difference. Chelsea also need someone to score goals but not someone like Lukaku. I would have liked Lewandowski or Haaland but they’ve gone elsewhere.”