Who Would Get the Better Deal from a Luiz-Mandzukic Swap: Chelsea or Bayern?

Garry Hayes@@garryhayesFeatured ColumnistMay 17, 2014

Chelsea's David Luiz, left shields the ball from Bayern's Mario Mandzukic during the soccer Super Cup final between Champions League winner Bayern Munich and Europa League winner Chelsea FC  at the Eden Stadium in Prague Friday, Aug. 30, 2013. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
Michael Sohn/Associated Press

"Everyone's a winner baby, that's the truth," once sang Hot Chocolate's Errol Brown.

It's not often true of transfers in football, but the mooted swap deal between Chelsea and Bayern Munich involving David Luiz and Mario Mandzukic could well live up to the song's mantra.

Martin Lipton of The Mirror reports Bayern are set to offer £15 million plus their Croatian striker to land Luiz, pipping Barcelona to his signature.

And given the standing of both players at their respective clubs, it's a deal they may well be eager to push through.

Indeed, Luiz has been forced to play second fiddle to the partnership of John Terry and Gary Cahill at the heart of the Chelsea defence this past year.

The pair helped Jose Mourinho's side to record the best defensive record in the Premier League for 2013-14, so it's difficult to imagine the manager turning his back on a winning formula.

Should Mourinho's preference remain unchanged over the summer, 2014-15 could well prove another frustrating campaign for Luiz.

Matt Dunham/Associated Press

Where Mandzukic is concerned, the arrival of Robert Lewandowski from Borussia Dortmund means his chances of first-team football are going to be severely limited in Bavaria, competing against the Polish striker who has long been coveted by the Bundesliga champions.

It's a rare occurrence where two giants of the European game are able to transfer players who have been key for them in recent years, yet come out looking stronger with little money spent.

This is one deal that circumstances suggest will break the mould.

In signing Luiz, Bayern will be adding a defender arguably of superior means to those already at their disposal, while Chelsea will count a world-class striker among their number after a season where Mourinho has bemoaned his lack of fire power.

Kerstin Joensson/Associated Press

Throw in the imminent capture of Diego Costa, per Neil Ashton of the Daily Mail, and suddenly Chelsea look a different beast altogether.

There are other implications to consider, too. This isn't about who plays where, it's about who spends what.

The same Mirror article suggests Chelsea are demanding a £30 million fee for their Brazilian defender should they sell Luiz without a player built into any agreement.

In these times of Financial Fair Play, it's a considerable sum for a defender, especially when those finances may be best spent to strengthen positions elsewhere.

UEFA mean business with their new rules. Only this week it has been confirmed Manchester City have been fined £49 million for breaching them, also having their Champions League squad capped at 21 players for next season, per BBC Sport.

Petr David Josek/Associated Press

Paris Saint-Germain have also fallen victim to UEFA's new approach, the Parisians being fined a similar amount to the Premier League champions.

The need for clubs to be more savvy in the transfer market is going to increase in the coming years, and deals such as the proposed Luiz-Mandzukic swap are part of that strategy.

There will always be those transfers that blow the market wide open, such as that of Gareth Bale to Real Madrid last summer, yet the days of clubs spending freely—or at least in the way we have seen in recent years—are at an end.

Only time will tell if Chelsea and Bayern are setting the tone for the future, but if this deal happens, it seems both clubs will be satisfied with themselves.


Garry Hayes is Bleacher Report's lead Chelsea correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @garryhayes