Two weeks ago Chelsea fans were up in arms. The transfer window was drawing to a close with no incomings and many were questioning why the club went to all the bother of getting their transfer ban halved in that Court of Arbitration for Sport appeal.
However, Much of their criticism was directed towards Marina Granovskaia. Now, 13 days later those same fans are praising the director’s business approach. Funny how quickly things can change.
The decision to sign Hakim Ziyech from Ajax in the summer for £33million, potentially rising to £36million, looks like a bargain and, ultimately, considering what happened last month is just good business.
The Dutch club were unwilling to let the Moroccan go midway through a campaign in which they are chasing a league title and also competing in the Europa League having finished third in Chelsea’s Champions League group.
Despite that Erik ten Hag, the manager, last night said that Ajax were surprised to have kept him in Amsterdam for so long and it felt inevitable that he would move on to bigger things. Supporters are often so emotionally invested in their teams that they forget for those who manage the purse strings it is a business.
And instead of paying way over the odds for Ziyech last month they are saving a significant amount of money by welcoming him to Stamford Bridge in the summer.
It is a good deal for the club, Ajax (a club long used to selling their biggest assets) are receiving a decent fee in return and the player has earned a long-awaited move to the big leagues. Everyone seems a winner right now, but Granovskaia is owed an apology from her critics for making the economically sensible decision.