Crazy Money: If Torres Costs $80 Million, What Are Messi and Co. Worth?

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Crazy Money: If Torres Costs $80 Million, What Are Messi and Co. Worth?
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Notorious B.I.G. once famously rapped: ''Mo' Money, Mo' Problems.'

Chelsea FC owner and Russian oil magnate Roman Abrahamovic, having splashed a staggering $70 million (£50 million) on transfer fees plus $15 million a year in wages and image rights fees on 26 year-old Spanish forward Fernando Torres last month, must be all too familiar with the Brooklyn rapper's issues.

He watched El Niño flop as Liverpool dealt a major blow to Chelsea's title hopes with a 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge last night.

Liverpool owner John W. Henry also splashed his cash on Jan. 31 with the high-purchase signings of Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez and his new English strike partner Andy Carroll for a total fee approaching $100 million.

Despite caretaker manager Kenny Dalglish not being able to select the latter due to injury and leaving the former on the bench, Boston Red Sox owner Henry reveled in his new club's fourth consecutive win.

Although it is unfair and unwise to judge the value of these three signings at such an early stage, it seems that a tide of optimism has washed onto the Liverpool docks and that Dalglish and his players are at the crest of a wave.

For Chelsea coach Carlo Ancelotti, Torres' arrival brings about what should be a very nice if tricky dilemma: how to incorporate three top-class strikers into a balanced and successful team.

While it is true that the merry go-round of strikers, gossip-mongering and desperate short-sightedness of many Premier League chairmen inflated the cost of each player significantly, English clubs historically continue to spend more money (relatively speaking) on players with Premier League experience and success...especially for young forwards.

So if Newcastle successfully auctioned Carroll for $55 million and Chelsea felt the need to splurge considerably more on Torres, I wonder how much England's top club would be willing to spend to bring in five of the finest players in world football today... 

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