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Chelsea have completed the permanent signing of Mateo Kovacic from Real Madrid for £40 million, with the Croatian international signing a five-year deal.
The midfielder made 51 appearances for Chelsea last season while on loan from Real Madrid, but he was never able to get on the scoresheet for the Blues.
Kovacic made 32 Premier League appearances last season but failed to register a single assist or goal and Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson sees his signing as a waste of money, revealing that Chelsea only signed the 24-year-old because of the club’s transfer ban.
“Do you think (Mateo) Kovacic would have signed for Chelsea without there being a transfer embargo?” Merson told Sky Sports.
“I don’t think he scored a goal and they’ve paid upwards of £40m. They’ve signed him because they need another body, surely?
“It’s not all about this year, it’s a three-year contract, and as a Chelsea fan it feels like a good opportunity to steadily, steadily bring these players through.
“One at a time, not bringing a four or five and then suddenly Chelsea are a mid-table team.”
Upon signing for the club, Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia revealed why the Blues have signed Mateo Kovacic.
“Mateo proved what an accomplished player he is during his season on loan with us and we are delighted to welcome him to the club on a permanent basis,” Granovskaia said.
“He already possesses extensive experience at club and international level and we are sure he will be a big success with Chelsea over the next five years.”