Blues Miss The Buyt

Last updated : 30 January 2004 By Rich Godden
Claudio Ranieri was known to be after a new central defender due to the amount of injuries his current defenders were suffering. Ayala was mentioned early on, but his name soon faded. It became apparent that a younger, whilst still experienced defender would be needed.

In my mind there are three choices- Christian Chivu of Ajax/Roma (if they ever sort out their tussle!), Phillipe Mexes of Auxerre and Daniel Van Buyten of Marseille. Which one is the odd one out??

Daniel Van Buyten is. For Van Buyten, unlike the other two, is available for transfer immediately for an asking price of £2.5million due to Marseille's financial crisis. What a bargain!

This is a player that Man Yoo were chasing a year ago for a reported £12 million! It seems apparent that he will be on his way to Manchester now- to the blue half though, in the form of Man City.

I can't help but feel that we have missed the boat on this one. Even if he didn't turn out to make the grade, what is £2.5 million to Chelsea?? We can afford to pay £3.5 million for Smertin, someone who may never play a game for the club (looking more likely since the arrival of Parker)- so why not take the gamble with van Buyten?