Moises Caicedo claims rubbished as Arsenal’s Jorginho and Declan Rice transfer moves explained

Comparisons have once again been made between Arsenal’s signing of Declan Rice and Jorginho and Chelsea’s signing of Moises Caicedo, but they should be treated with the same ridicule that they exhib

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 25: Moises Caicedo of Chelsea is consoled by Ben Chilwell of Chelsea at full-time following the team's defeat in the Carabao Cup Final match between Chelsea and Liverpool at Wembley Stadium on February 25, 2024 in London, England. (Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

There was an inevitability to it. Jorginho comes in for an Arsenal display and looks great again alongside Declan Rice, while Moises Caicedo stinks the place out once more for Chelsea. Cue those who enjoy dabbling in the alternate universes saying how Arsenal dodged a bullet there.

This view point seems to get trotted out every time the Ecuadorian pulls on a Chelsea shirt. In reality though it is at best ill-informed and at worst ignorant.

As Arsenal approached Caicedo last January, it was never a case of either him or Rice. Arsenal had first been linked with Rice early in the month, but he was always going to be a summer target given the scale of the move. The Gunners didn’t go for Caicedo instead of him, they wanted the then Brighton star to play alongside the England international.

This was reported by football.london at the time. Caicedo was viewed as a long-term option in midfield to replace the ageing Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny after Albert Sambi Lokonga was deemed not good enough to fill the role.

Having failed to get Caicedo though, and with Partey struggling with an injury late in January, Arsenal decided they needed cover for the Ghanaian until the end of the season. They had scouted Jorginho a few years prior, and with a sense of opportunism jumped on the Italian’s dwindling game time at Chelsea to lure him to the Emirates Stadium as an experienced and quality option to bolster their title challenge.

Arsenal were open to offers on Partey in the summer, but when nothing came in for the Ghanaian there was no space to then go again for Caicedo having signed their primary target Rice early in the window. The Ecuadorian was keen to move though, and ultimately chose to go to Chelsea despite strong interest from Liverpool. This should leave the Caicedo/Rice and Jorginho debate dead in the water. Still though it persists

Caicedo has not become a bad player overnight. Instead, like so many at Chelsea, he has fallen victim to the instability that envelops the club in their current state of transition.

It’s true to say that he had a poor game in the Carabao Cup final against Liverpool. There’s a strong argument that he could have been sent off for his tackle on Ryan Gravenberch and as football.london pointed out in our player ratings from the game, he was too eager to jump into tackles and showed his rawness.

This is where you feel the Ecuadorian could have benefitted from a more stable environment around him. Under a coach with a clear tactical plan like Mikel Arteta, Caicedo could easily be thriving right now, rather than looking a little lost as Mauricio Pochettino figures out how best to use his Chelsea squad.

If Caicedo were available for a transfer tomorrow then you could be pretty certain that Arsenal would still show an interest despite how well Jorginho has done. The same goes for Mykhailo Mudryk by the way.

The claims that Arsenal dodged a bullet by not signing either are dull and disingenuous. We should be smart enough to see that there’s a multitude of circumstances at play here, and treat this situation with a bit more maturity.

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