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Villarreal still interested in Fulham’s Zambo Anguissa

Despite adding two midfielders already, VIllarreal is still not done in the transfer market.

Real Madrid CF v Villarreal CF - La Liga Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Javi Mata, writing for AS, has reported that Villarreal are still interested in bringing Zambo Anguissa into the side for next season, despite yesterday’s additions of Francis Coquelin and Dani Parejo. He also reports, though, that the valuation of the player at 25 million is not going to happen this summer, so Villarreal is seeking another loan.

I just do not see any reason why Fulham would agree to such a loan. Reports around Fulham suggest they are not intending to lay out another 100m in the window like they did the last time they were promoted. With a short offseason, and an unwillingness to spend a ton of money, why on earth would Fulham agree to loan out one of the most talented players they own?

Villarreal has made ambitious moves so far this offseason, but they have done so at very low transfer cost. The financial realities of COVID-19 affect everyone, some more than others. Valencia, for instance, have their president saying that if they can’t slash wages by at least 40% the entire club will go bankrupt. Villarreal’s financial reality is healthier. We can handle (thanks in part to Santi and Bruno moving on) increased wages, but the actual transfer fee outlay has been low. To buy Zambo we would have had to put down 25m at once, and that clearly wasn’t going to happen. Since Fulham is unlikely to want a loan, why has this story made its way to the press?

The answer, I think, is rather simple. The goal here is to unsettle Zambo into agitating for a move. If the player is unwilling to return to Fulham they would have little choice but to send him over to us and work out the details of a full transfer later on.

Zambo doesn’t strike me as the kind of player who would agitate for such a move. I really don’t think this is going anywhere, but it’s fascinating to me that the club is still interested in adding another midfielder even after bringing in Coquelin and Parejo. This suggests a couple of things to me: 1. Coquelin was probably brought in to be a rotational piece, not to be an everyday starter (which we’ve said for weeks). 2. If a loan for Zambo doesn’t work out, another loan for an unsettled player like Guendouzi could still be an option.