Chelsea rumours: Alex Teixeira is Shakhtar star after scoring run
Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | November 29, 2015
Jose Mourinho can put all the spin he wants on the winter window after comments that he doesn’t have the right to ask for transfer funds this January, but gossip column inches are being used to link Chelsea with Shakhtar Donetsk’s latest Brazilian wonder Alex Teixeira.
Reports claim the Blues, 4/1 with Coral for a top four finish having mounted a dismal defence of the Premier League title this term, will move this mid-season for the 25-year-old attacking midfielder after his scoring exploits at the Ukrainian outfit.
Uncapped talent Alex Teixeira has followed up a sensational 19 goals in just 13 domestic outings for Shakhtar this term, with two being at Real Madrid – albeit in a Champions League 4-3 losing effort.
All about the money?
A criticism often launched at Brazilian players that have joined the Donetsk side before internal strife broke out in Ukraine was they were mercenaries; more interested in money than by testing themselves against Europe’s elite.
Yet Alex Teixeira’s brace at the Bernabeu, coupled by the success of former teammates elsewhere and subsequent to their Shakhtar spells, suggests he could be the real deal.
Should any concrete interest from Chelsea materialise in the player, then their hierarchy will hope – after a spell of adjusting to Premier League life – that Alex Teixeira could have the same impact as Willian is having at Stamford Bridge this season.
Hard-working wide player Willian has six free-kicks from 12 shots at goal this term, and his workmanlike qualities made such set-piece nous less than obvious at first glance. Similar question marks have been held over other Shakhtar stars following moves from the Ukraine.
Deep-lying midfielder Fernandinho has played an understated role in Manchester City’s recent success, helping the Etihad outfit to a Premier League and Capital One Cup double in his first season there.
Only international icons Lionel Messi, Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo scored more Champions League goals than Luiz Adriano last term, and those European exploits for Shakhtar earned the striker a move to AC Milan this summer.
Winger Douglas Costa’s 38 goals and 40 assists from the flank in Ukraine have been built on big time with Bayern Munich, where he has set up an average of one strike per game in the Bundesliga.
Alex Teixeira worthy of Chelsea cash
If such Shakhtar talents can step up and deliver, then they are compelling evidence that Alex Teixeira, who comes from this selfsame crop, can do likewise.
The Blues have had a number of Brazil internationals on their books already, so a move could help their prospective target’s international prospects.
David Luiz, Oscar, Ramires and Willian all racked up plenty of Samba Boys caps while playing club football for Chelsea, having all risen to the Premier League challenge. Three of those four are still in west London, alongside youngster Kenedy, and this contingent of compatriots would make Alex Teixeira feel at home.
Spain playmaker Cesc Fabregas (one goal, three assists all competitions) and Oscar (three goals, one assist) have looked particularly jaded this season, so adding two-footed Alex Teixeira to the Blues’ spine may well add new impetus.
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