A well-placed source at the outgoing Premier league champions Chelsea has revealed that he once told the club to secure the services of their rival’s midfielder but no one listened.
The Blues scout Piet de Visser told Het Laatste Nieuws that he urged the club to sign then Fulham midfielder Moussa Dembele. The 28-year-old eventually joined Tottenham where, under the tutelage of Mauricio Pochettino, he has gone on to become one of the Premier League’s best central midfielder.
Unlike Chelsea who are certain of no European action next season, Tottenham are on course to win the EPL title if they could bridge the gap between them and Leicester city.
Of course Dembele has been one of the top performers for Spurs this season, with his sturdy performances in midfield and tireless returns to help the defence.
That has gotten the aged de Visser biting his lips, and he can only but reminisce on the missed chance.
“I fell in love with Mousa Dembele during the 2008 Olympics,” said De Visser. “He’s a world class player, but they have often played him out of position. He’s not a striker or a second striker, not even a number 10. He’s at his best as a central midfielder, as an ‘8’. He will never score 15 goals in a season, but he has a high work rate, a strong body and an excellent passing game. He’s an all-rounder.Somebody with power, technique and stamina.”
“I’ve often advised Chelsea to sign him, but other scouts and managers weren’t convinced. They didn’t see what I saw in him. After a while I started thinking: ‘Am I crazy? Why can’t anyone see it?’ With Fulham against Chelsea he once completely out played Lampard.” he added.
Meanwhile, Chelsea are reportedly linked to a host of midfielders ahead of the summer transfer window, with Radja Nainggolan and Javier Pastore topping the chart. They are reportedly set for an overhaul of their first team following the arrival of the new manager Antoni Conte.