Following the recent chaos at Anzhi Makhachkala, it looks as though the vast majority of the club’s highest earners will be heading out of the exit door. The highest of which is Cameroonian international Samuel Eto’o, who spoke Tuesday about the prospect of a potential reunion with his former manager Jose Mourinho:
"He is one of the best coaches in the world - and we had a lot of success together at Inter Milan. I would like to have the chance to play under him again - because it is never boring when Jose is around.
But Chelsea and Mourinho would be ill-advised to take a punt on the former Barcelona and Inter Milan forward.
Eto’o was one of the greatest goalscorers of his generation and whilst he remains a capable, clever player, he is not what Chelsea need right now.
Mourinho used Eto’o to great effect at Inter, either in tandem with Diego Milito or as was often the case in Europe, in a role on the left flank. But since his transfer to Anzhi, Eto’o has operated in a variety of roles, most prominently off a main striker.
Needless to say, Chelsea are already overflowing with talented young players in this area of the pitch, with Juan Mata, Eden Hazard, Oscar, Kevin De Bruyne and Marco van Ginkel all vying for a starting spot.
So you'd suspect that if Eto’o was to head to Stamford Bridge, it would be spearheading the attack. But after plying his trade in the Russian top flight since 2011, would the Cameroonian be suited to the Premier league?
The dynamism that once saw him fire Barcelona and Inter to treble cup success has slowly started to desert him. Whether or not he could come into the English game and adapt immediately is questionable, especially when you consider the disinterested performances he put in at Newcastle and Liverpool in last season's Europa League. In those ties he gave the impression of a player well within his comfort zone.
Ultimately, even if Eto’o was to come in and set the league alight, it would represent another quick fix to Chelsea’s chronic striker problems. Mourinho’s reported pursuit of Wayne Rooney by the Telegraph, not to mention the faith put in Romelu Lukaku during preseason, suggests that he is looking for a long-term fix, and he should continue to do exactly that.
Would Chelsea supporters really want Eto’o to come in and starve the up-and-coming Lukaku of minutes? Especially when you take into account his fantastic showings for West Brom and in preseason? Does he represent a better option than Rooney—a player four-and-a-half years Eto'o's junior and proven in English football? Probably not.
As of yet here is nothing to suggest that Chelsea have any concrete interest in the player. Mourinho looks intent on building another young, hungry squad at Chelsea with long-term plans very much at the forefront of his mind. Whilst it would be quite the romantic reunion, Eto’o just doesn’t fit in with this vision.