Gylfi Sigurdsson’s future has been put on ice all summer with the midfielder missing Swansea’s pre-season tour of the U.S. because of transfer speculation, as well as missing the Swans’ opening fixture against Southampton after all but making himself unavailable for selection.
All that now looks to be over, as Everton are set to break their transfer record for the Icelandic international. Ronald Koeman’s offer of £45 million appears to be enough to convince Paul Clement to sell his talisman despite being five-million short of the asking price.
Can’t believe it actually happened, but if Gylfi Sigurdsson is valued at 50 million, Neymar is comfortably worth 198 million. ? pic.twitter.com/pDBXpXhvek
— AK groundsman (@ak_groundsman) August 3, 2017
However, if you’re in the camp that this is bad business and the midfielder is not worth such a fee, then think again. Football is relative. Footballers wages are, sadly, relative. For that, the hefty fee that Swansea are demanding is right for the importance of Sigurdsson to Swansea.
Without Sigurdsson, the Welsh side would have been relegated to the Championship last season; simple as. Of the 45 goals Swansea scored last season, Sigurdsson played a part in 22 of them – 13 assists, nine goals.
Such is the Swans’ contribution to his side, he also covered the most distance of any Premier League player – 433km, (stat from BBC Sport). This is the relativity of this player, so important that he keeps a team in top flight football.
It would be very easy to make the comparison of Sigurdsson’s move to Zinedine Zidane’s Juventus to Real Madrid transfer in 2001; both the same fee, both similar positions, both equal(ish) importance for their clubs.
Except, they aren’t of equal importance to their respective sides. Sigurdsson is not, and will not, ever be the player Zidane is, but he’s of greater value to Swansea than Zidane was to Juventus. The Icelandic international has already scored 37 goals for the Swans in 128 appearances, compared to Zidane’s 31 in 209 for Juve. On top of this, the inflation in the market has to be taken into account, hence a player such as Sigurdsson is costing the same as the greatest ever midfielder.
— Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) May 26, 2016
Swansea are reportedly coming in for a £25 million deal for Nacer Chadli as a replacement for Sigurdsson. A price which is the exact example of the poor value and inflation of the market; Chadli’s importance to West Brom is suspect, and his tally of 20 Premier League goals in four seasons was matched by Sigursddon in half the period of two seasons.
Everton should be delighted, Swansea should be fearing the worst. The most important player in terms of relativity to a club has left, and Swans now must be set for relegation to the second-tier of English football.