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Sergej Milinkovic-Savic: Do We Need Him?

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is a player well known across European football and sought after what feels like almost every single transfer w...

Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is a player well known across European football and sought after what feels like almost every single transfer window by many of Europe’s biggest and best despite having never graced the pitch on a Tuesday or Wednesday night with the stars of the Champions League on his sleeve is simply a testament to his irrepressible brilliance. Arguably already a club legend at Lazio currently in his 5th year of service to the Romans. The present and future talisman of a Serbia team currently in the midst of a sharp decline. A talent with an ever-rising market value now almost as high as the points value of his name on Scrabble. Potentially a historic Serie A title winner. Potentially....a future Chelsea player?

Though his quality is hard to dispute, the question is - do we need him? After all, if there’s one thing to be learnt from the early Roman era from a recruitment perspective, it’s that solving a team’s problems is never as simple as signing the best player you can afford and attract in a given position, and for me opting for Milinkovic-Savic would, save some truly unprecedented departures from our midfield ranks, be making this same error all over again. Tactically, there are few issues; “SMS” would fit perfectly into Lampard’s system in a box-to-box role. Covered and supported by a deeper midfielder such as Kante, he would have the freedom to make runs into the box, link up with attackers in the final 3rd and provide hugely valuable input in terms of goal contributions to a midfield that has notoriously lacked the cutting edge. Fitting in a more broad sense into the aggressive, intense footballing environment of the Premier League is also unlikely to be a challenge given his imposing frame and athleticism. 

The real obstacle to this deal progressing any further, though, comes in the shape of Ruben Loftus-Cheek, a very much comparably talented, physically dominant and well-rounded player who, in my opinion, was an achilles injury and a few frustrating cases of managerial stubbornness away from being our player of the season last term, not including of course, well, you can hazard a guess as to who. While rumours of internal doubts within Chelsea over whether or not Ruben will ever be able to return to his best form in blue, given the magnitude of his injury, have periodically surfaced, a bumper new contract earlier this season surely dispels any doubts in that regard. In light of that, although I would, of course, be buzzing to see a player of the quality of SMS holding a Chelsea shirt next season, it would certainly be a deal I’d embrace with my heart rather than my head.

Written by - @MishaCFC
Edit by - @KristenPulisic

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