Welcome to the club, Carlos Marchena. The 31-year-old central defender has signed for 3 years from our local rivals Valencia CF, with whom he spent the past decade. Fabricio Fuentes left in January, while Diego Godín and Gonzalo Rodríguez are on their way out, so Marchena is a sorely-needed stabilizing force on our back line.
I like this signing. Let's look at the arguments for and against it. What do you think?
- Paying a transfer fee for a 31-year-old. Maybe illogical, but €2 million is nothing these days, even for a one-year buyout. And we've banked nearly €10 million from salary savings and transfer fees for Escudero and Llorente.
- Too old. By comparison, Fabio Cannavaro and Carles Puyol each were 32 when they hoisted the World Cup. I'll grant that Marchena may not be a starter in two years, but the club has some experience in navigating that situation (see: Javi Venta).
- Longtime Valencia captain. Los Che is our biggest rival, so weakening them is a good plan. And Marchena started his career with Sevilla, so we may have beaten them to another transfer target.
- World Cup champion. It can't hurt to have another one around. At the very least, Marchena will be a great role model for Musacchio, Catalá, and Kiko.
- Knows La Liga. Top-flight football is as much about physical ability as knowing your opposition. And it would be nice to get a few veteran calls in our favor.
- Starter at Euro 2008. Just as Senna, Cazorla, and Diego López were phased out of the Spanish squad by Vicente del Bosque, Marchena started alongside Puyol in 2008 but was replaced by Piqué by 2010. I like that a number of our Spanish players will have a chip on their shoulder coming into the season.