Last week, in our writer’s chat, it was pointed out that the news about Oscar Rodriguez to Villarreal had dried up. I responded that this probably meant that of all the attacking midfield links that was the one most likely to happen. According to a report from Onda Cero, that now seems to be the case.
The rumored deal will land in the 10m range with Real Madrid maintaining 50% of any future sell on fee. Frankly, I consider Oscar’s open play a bit suspect and with the structure of his deal even if he does pan out it will be hard for us to make much profit. Buying a player from Zinedine Zidane’s Real Madrid is always high profile but I feel like sometimes the public gets suckered in to believing everything they touch turns to gold. Oscar is unquestionably one of the best free kick takers in Europe, but if you are expecting him to step in and be the sort of creative force Santi Cazorla was from open play I think you’ll be disappointed. In fact, I see him primarily as depth for Manu Trigueros and or our wingers.
Oscar would be the first official signing of the Unai Emery era at Villarreal and the success of this move will depend largely on the Basque coach’s ability to develop the young attacker. It is telling, to me at least, that Oscar is being sold while so many other young creative talents at Real Madrid are going on loan. The structure of the deal suggests they believe he will improve but that he’ll never be Madrid first team quality.
That probably just about matches my assessment. I don’t see him carrying us creatively this year the way Santi did last seaon, we saw in the first half of last season what an offense with Oscar as the primary force behind two good strikers looked like, and it really was nothing all that impressive. Still, we need depth in midfield, and if Oscar ends up being one of three mids we add this summer (including Zambo and a true DM) I’ll be pretty pleased.
Emery predicted ‘four or five signings’. I’m thinking Oscar, Zambo, a DM, and a CB should get us most of the way there. We’ll see if anyone needs to be sold to get these things done.