Gary Neville aims 'signed everybody' dig at Chelsea as Joao Felix transfer mistake leaves him in utter disbelief

  • Man Utd secured Champions League qualification
  • Neville surprised by lack of a permanent option for Felix
  • Forward expected to seek move in the summer

WHAT HAPPENED? Following Manchester United's 4-1 win over Chelsea, Neville expressed his surprise and disappointment at Chelsea's decision not to include an option-to-buy in Felix's loan deal. United's victory secured their place in the Champions League for the next season, while Chelsea's defeat pushed them down to 12th place in the Premier League standings.

Felix, the Portugal playmaker, scored a late consolation goal for Chelsea after coming off the bench in the second half. However, Neville questioned Chelsea's failure to secure a permanent deal for Felix despite the club's significant spending on incoming transfers, totalling over £600 million in a year.

Neville praised Felix's quality, emphasizing his exceptional ball control, decision-making, and finishing ability. He expressed his disbelief that Chelsea had signed numerous players but failed to secure an option on the one player they should have prioritised.

Felix is expected to seek a permanent move in the upcoming transfer window as he has fallen out of favour at Atletico Madrid. Although he has enjoyed his time at Chelsea, he has not confirmed whether he will return to the club in the future.

Despite being one of the few bright spots in Chelsea's disappointing campaign, the lack of a previous agreement between Chelsea and Atletico could result in the London club paying a premium for Felix. Atletico will likely seek to recoup a significant portion of the £113 million they paid for him in 2019.

WHAT THEY SAID: "He [Felix] is a proper player, just the way he moves with the ball it looks different. He is so in control, class, real class, he has options in front of him but thinks no, I am going to go on my own, really good finish. They [Chelsea] have signed everybody but the one player they should have an option on they haven't got," he stated to Sky Sports.

THE BIGGER PICTURE: Chelsea's failure to secure an option-to-buy in his loan deal raises questions about their transfer strategy and decision-making. Despite significant investments in other players, the omission of a permanent option for Felix surprised observers, given his quality and potential impact on the team. This decision could have financial consequences for Chelsea if they fail to negotiate an optimum transfer fee with Atletico.


Joao Felix Chelsea 2022-23Getty ImagesTodd BoehlyGetty

WHAT NEXT? As the upcoming transfer window approaches, Felix is expected to explore permanent options. With his limited playing time at Atletico, a move away from the Spanish capital seems likely. Chelsea's failure to secure an option-to-buy in his loan deal opens the possibility for other clubs to pursue him. The club must carefully consider their strategy and approach in securing Felix's services, especially considering his desire to play in the Champions League.