The Athletic’s longer and more considered pieces always bring some insight, and they got their money’s worth by hiring two of the best connected Chelsea writers in Simon Johnson and Liam Twomey.
This week they have a piece about Chelsea’s January transfer window, one that promised much but delivered nothing. We were all fairly certain that Olivier Giroud was going to leave and be replaced by another backup striker, but in the end that move never materialised.
Why was that? The Athletic write today that the Blues were offered Salomon Rondon; whose arrival would have allowed the club to move on Giroud.
But as they write, Chelsea weren’t keen on “replacing the man who will likely lead the line for France at Euro 2020 this summer with a striker who scored 35 goals in 140 Premier League appearances for West Brom and Newcastle.”
So, a PR decision then? They didn’t like the optics of selling their handsome star striker who plays for the world champions and replacing him with an unfashionable striker who played for unfashionable clubs?
Of course, we all know that PR is something that every club and manager needs to be aware of – however worrying too much about what people outside the club will say or think is not a smart way to make footballing decisions.