Chelsea head coach Jose Mourinho is known as arguably the best in the world because he gets most decisions right. And he seems to have shown little apprehension in his pursuit of Radamel Falcao. Unperturbed by a reported loan fee of £4m to Monaco and a wage of around £170,000 a week, Mourinho clearly feels as if this is a gamble worth taking.
But, freed from the shackles of a terrible time at Manchester United, many expected to see a rejuvenated Falcao at The Copa America. Alas, after two full games for Colombia, he’s completely failed to rediscover his sparkle in front of goal.
At 29 you could argue that, with the right tutelage, Falcao has the capacity to return to his very best form. But, the more we look, the more we see parallels with Chelsea flop Fernando Torres.
In their prime, both were deadly in front of goal and both helped by decent, if not explosive, ground speed. But that third major knee injury seems to have terminally dampened the pace of Falcao and, with it, his ability to find the pockets of space that he once discovered so naturally.
The assumption is that Diego Costa will stay at Chelsea and Falcao will be given the time, as understudy, to return to the boil as the season progresses. And it could turn out to be a masterstroke from the Potuguese if Falcao can make a difference at the business end of next season.
At his best, Falcao is a player who makes the game worth watching, with his almost impossible, comic book strikes and wonderful movement.
But the ghost of players like Torres and Shevchenko loom large over Stamford Bridge and we can offer Falcao no more than a 50/50 chance of doing the business at Chelsea in his next loan spell. How much of a psychological impact has that doomed year at Manchester United had on him? And to what extent has the knee injury affected his game? These questions remain unanswered for now.