The Blues missed out on the signing of Jules Kounde this summer.
Chelsea may have failed to sign Jules Kounde but it will serve them better in the long run in the transfer window. Manchester United went a similar road when they brought in Harry Maguire and have been paying for it since.
However, Marina Granovskaia is renowned for her ability in the transfer window, demanding high fees for players but also cutting down costs.
That was more than evident over the past two months where the Blues sold off a number of fringe players for a lot of cash.
But the Kounde saga has shown another side to the Russian when things do not go so swimmingly after a done deal appeared to be all but confirmed. A verbal agreement had been put in place that would see the Kounde sign for Chelsea in a move worth around £52m.
But at the last moment, the club’s transfer chief Monchi demanded a further £13m – taking the deal to £65m – Kounde’s release clause.
Chelsea never spoke to Sevilla again after that, effectively killing the deal, as confirmed by the Sevilla director.
“The only formal offer from Chelsea came last Wednesday,” Monchi said. We weren’t satisfied with the offer, and it was linked to Chelsea selling a player. It was a decent fee but it didn’t meet our criteria. We haven’t spoken with Chelsea since Friday night.”
Kounde is a remarkable talent and has been called one of the best defenders in La Liga and many Chelsea fans are unhappy with the manner in which the transfer broke down.
But Granovskaia is no fool and has the long-term in her sights, knowing that paying more now would only lead to trouble down the road.
A lesson might have been learned from the Maguire situation at United, who had tried to sign him from Leicester in 2018 only to be told he would cost £65m.
The Old Trafford supremos failed to adhere to then-manager Jose Mourinho’s wishes and refused to sign him but a year later, it became apparent that his services would be required.
However, the price had changed – Leicester now wanted £80m – and that fee was paid up with maybe a few United bigwigs turning in embarrassment.
Granovskaia will never be taken for a ride and Sevilla upping their demands at the last moment was never going to sit well with her.