What’s the story?
Barcelona superstar Gerard Pique is considering a move to Premier League giants Chelsea, according to a report in Spanish newspaper Don Balon. The Spanish centre-back has grown weary of the criticism aimed at him in Spain, and hopes for a return to England, with partner Shakira also keen on a move to London.
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Gerard Pique signed for Barcelona in 2008, after having moved from Manchester United. The centre-back has gone on to enjoy a greatly successful career with the Blaugrana, racking up 26 trophies in his time with the Catalans. Recently, Pique has garnered a bit of negative press outside of Catalunya, leading to him announcing his retirement from international football after the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
The heart of the matter
Pique’s tiff with the La Liga president, Javier Tebas, over the refereeing standards earned him plenty of criticism in the Spanish press. The centre-back is considering a move away from Barcelona as a result, having grown tired of every statement of his being analyzed with a microscope.
According to the report, the major reason for Pique considering a move back to the Premier League is because of his partner, Shakira. The hate surrounding Pique has apparently affected the Colombian star, who has felt the negative effect of Pique’s infamy in her concerts within Catalunya and elsewhere in Spain as well.
Shakira favours a move to London, and with Cesc Fabregas at Chelsea, Gerard Pique has a trusted adviser with regards to a move. The pair grew up together at La Masia and share a close friendship.
Despite Chelsea’s impressive defensive record, Antonio Conte is in the market for a centre-back. Gerard Pique ticks all the right boxes, and a move to Chelsea to play alongside Cesc Fabregas should entice Pique as well. Barcelona will not let the centre-back leave unless they receive a sizeable fee in return, especially with Luis Enrique’s side not keeping up the pace in the La Liga title challenge.
While the rumour does sound outlandish at first glance, there could be some smoke behind the fire. Gerard Pique’s recent comments to the press have the air of a player growing increasingly frustrated with his current situation.
While a move from Barcelona to Chelsea would be arguably be a minor step down in footballing terms, it would behoove us to remember that footballers are human beings too – domestic bliss, however strange to a football fan, would be Pique’s #1 priority and he might just acquiesce to Shakira’s request.