With media outlets like the Daily Star claiming that the official announcement confirming Jose Mourinho's return to Chelsea is just around the corner, the Mirror reports that the self-proclaimed Special One is expected to be bestowed with a £100 million budget.
Rumors from the London Evening Standard and the Daily Mail link the club to moves for stars such as Radamel Falcao, Edinson Cavani, Isco, Andre Schurrle and Luke Shaw. The possibility of a second homecoming for Mourinho has only further intensified speculation.
In what is by far the most bizarre Chelsea-related rumor doing the rounds right now, the Daily Mail declares that the Blues are front-runners for the signature of Cristiano Ronaldo and that Real Madrid's talisman is set to join compatriot Mourinho at the West London club.
The inference being drawn is a result of former Real president Ramon Calderon's interview with talkSPORT, in which he appeared to hint at Stamford Bridge as a possible destination for a man oft heralded as one of the world's two finest players.
In Calderon's words:
There are not many teams that could afford to pay him what he deserves and who can pay Real Madrid what they are asking for. There are three clubs - Manchester City, PSG and Chelsea. I don’t think any other club is going to pay that amount of money for a player.
Sure looks like Calderon's comments have been misconstrued, doesn't it? He merely stated the clubs that he believes have the financial muscle to purchase Ronaldo.
I don't believe this transaction is going through, for a fair few solid reasons.
First things first: Ronaldo is still a much-adored figure at Manchester United, and I doubt that he'd be willing to jeopardize his status with the Old Trafford faithful by signing with a major rival.
If Ronaldo leaves Los Blancos, it would be difficult to envisage him going anywhere but back to his old stomping ground, as a return to United is not completely out of question, per the Daily Mail.
Chelsea, meanwhile, have their focus largely on trying to put together a team of young footballers with the potential to develop into world-class talents. Even though Ronaldo would be an improvement on just about any wide player Chelsea have, I don't think going for the Portuguese national team's captain would represent a sound investment.
To state the obvious in layman's terms, it would take a lot of money. But let's not forget: In Eden Hazard, the Blues already possess a player with the potential to emulate Ronaldo's achievements in the Premier League.
If anything, they should be looking at bringing in a center-forward comfortable operating as a lone striker—someone in the mold of Robert Lewandowski. In short, there are better areas to look at for potential investment and certainly better deals available out there.
Last but not least, Ronaldo and Mourinho have shared something of a frosty relationship at Real, and the winger has criticized the outgoing Real manager's tactics in the not-so-distant past, according to The Guardian. In fact, even this particular gesticulation from Ronaldo upon scoring his 200th goal for the club recently was interpreted as an insult targeted at his manager.
Not that it ever affected the 27-year-old's performances. Ronaldo's individual form at the Bernabeu has consistently been top-notch, even through Mourinho's three-year reign.
However, with Mourinho almost certain to be granted a second stint as Chelsea gaffer, dressing-room harmony will feature high on his list of priorities, especially when one considers the factors that have contributed to Real Madrid's decision to part company with him.
Could a transfer shocker like the Luis Figo one in the previous decade be on the cards? As I see it, this is mere speculation that will die down sooner rather than later.