Chelsea have seemingly ventured into a summer that's been allocated for overhauling their Champions League winning team. Didier Drogba has opted to quit Chelsea, Salomon Kalou and Jose Bosingwa have already been shown the exit door while Florent Malouda is expected to move away as well. Eden Hazard and Marko Marin make their way in while Hulk is reportedly being chased. The club's attention has now been focused on finding a quality right-back and Douglas Maicon is the name that has sprung up off late.
Just two seasons ago, Jose Mourinho was at the helm at Inter Milan and led them through a phenomenal treble winning season. At the time, Maicon was at his prime and considered the best right-back in the world. During that 2009-10 season, he registered 7 goals and 12 assists, the kind of return a winger would be proud of. When Mourinho took over at Real Madrid the following season, he desperately wanted to take the wing-back with him and he made it no secret. However, Inter were demanding an exorbitant fee to persuade them to let go of their prized asset and Madrid were not ready to meet those demands. Since then, Maicon's market value has dropped drastically and could now be a bargain at a reported £6 million.
Let's be clear about this, Maicon is not the player he was a couple of seasons ago. During the last campaign, he scored 3 goals and made 4 assists having played only 28 games. If he is to enjoy a successful season at Chelsea, he must endure a minimum of 40 games and that's easier said than done for a player his age coming to a league that is as physical and as fervently paced as the Premier League.
Those who witnessed Gareth Bale shred the Brazilian to bits at the San Siro in 2010 will question his ability to cope in the England's elite division but let's not forget that Bale was simply unstoppable that night and the best defenders in years gone past would have struggled to keep up with his blistering pace. Chelsea fans shouldn't read too much into Maicon's performances last season as any player would suffer when the team does not play well as a unit. The Brazilian turns 31 this month but could still be a success in London for the next 3 or 4 years. Roberto Carlos played at the highest level with Real Madrid until the age of 34 so there's no reason why Maicon cannot be the short-term solution to Chelsea's problems at right-back.
If managed correctly, he can still be one of the best in his position. He still has the pace and physicality to make the grade in England while his attacking flair is still a dominant aspect in his game and will always trouble opponents. He can unleash a stinging shot at goal while his crossing has always been nothing short of exceptional. Maicon is not the sort of full-back who goes about his business quietly, he enjoys bombing up and down his right flank and is always enthusiastic to get involved in attack. It would be incredibly difficult to find a full-back as dynamic and energetic as him.
Maicon could prove to be an outstanding short-term signing for Chelsea if the deal goes through. For around £6 million, it would be one of the shrewdest signings Roberto Di Matteo will ever make. The Italian coach may even consider recruiting a young understudy for the full-back who could replace him in the future. Chelsea have made it quite obvious that they don't want to hang around and rebuild gradually to forge a complete team in a couple of seasons but instead prefer to make quick signings to eradicate any weaknesses in the squad. As far as that philosophy goes, Maicon is the ideal candidate for Chelsea in order to keep them competing at the very highest level at present.
Do you think Chelsea are making the right decision by going after Maicon? Will he be a success at Stamford Bridge? Letus know YOUR opinions by commenting below...
How do you stay up to date with football when on the move? With http://m.goal.com – your best source for mobile coverage of the beautiful game.