DID CHELSEA OVERPAY FOR 20-YEAR-OLD CHRISTIAN PULISIC?

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Chelsea have signed Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund for a fee of £57.5 million but will loan the American international back to Dortmund for the rest of the season.

The 20-year-old has scored nine goals in 23 games for the United States.

According to German football expert Raphael Honigstein, Chelsea overpaid for Pulisic but he insists the American has talent.

“He is an attacking midfielder who can play as a number ten, in the hole or out wide, but he’s not an out-and-out player in any of those positions,” Honigstein told talkSPORT.

“In a way he’s very versatile, but on the other hand what has worked against him this season is that he doesn’t necessarily give you one thing and give you a ten out of ten in any of those positions.

“But he is only 20 years old and put that into context with his American brand value and the huge following he has, it’s not a gamble in my view. Is it expensive? Yes, but the guy has real talent.

“A lot of scouts think he is about the make the next step up if you put him in a more position-based environment, which is where Chelsea and [Maurizio] Sarri come in.”

Honigstein also believes signing Pulisic would help Chelsea gain even more fans in the US and help open the door to further business opportunities in the US for Chelsea.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Honigstein said: “He’s a real talent and especially if you consider the marketing value as the No 1 American football player of his generation – it’s not a deal that feels expensive.

“This is a player that a lot of Premier League clubs were interested in, he brings tremendous value when it comes to gaining followers and attention in America, which is a key market for many Premier League clubs for obvious reasons.

“He might make it easier for Chelsea to, I would not say sell the club, but maybe exploit different opportunities in America.

“If Roman Abramovich deems that someone else should come in alongside him or maybe he wants to sell the club – all these things make it quite a smart business move, if you will.”

Honigstein also believes Dortmund got a very good deal for Pulisic considering the American would have been out of contract in 2020 and had decided he wasn’t extending his Dortmund contract.

“I think they (Dortmund) got the best out of the deal that was possible for them,” Honigstein added.

“Once it became clear that he was not going to renew his contract which runs out in 2020 there was a real danger that he might run down his contract and they would lose him for nothing.

“Effectively moving forward that move by a year and still achieving quite a high price should be considered a nice bit of business from Dortmund’s point of view.

“But that does not mean the player is not worth it. Once Pulisic decided he would not stay at Dortmund beyond 2020 then really he became a free agent in all but name. Dortmund had to see if they could extract maximum value.

“They didn’t have a good hand to deal with initially because the player was adamant he would not stay but as they often do, Dortmund managed to make the most out if it.”

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OTONY
I eat, sleep and live Chelsea.