Rumours abound that Petr Cech’s deposer Thibaut Courtois is poised to ink a new contract at Chelsea despite playing just three games for the club.
A fresh five-year deal awaits the Belgian stopper once he returns from international duty, complete with improved terms to reward the 22-year-old for his rapid ascension into one of the game’s finest net minders.
Swansea will be the first adversaries attempting to sully Courtois’ laundry once Premier League action resumes, with a price as short as 18/25 saying they fail in their mission, such has been the standard of the La Liga winning stopper’s early-season form.
His initial performances in the English top tier have already begun to justify the hype Courtois lugs around with him and anchoring him to Stamford Bridge for the foreseeable could well be Chelsea’s best piece of summer business.
Having carved a lofty reputation at Atletico Madrid, the Spaniard’s city rivals Real were one of several high-profile sides looking at the Genk academy graduate during pre-season.
Los Blancos appear to be in the process of unearthing an heir to Iker Casillas’ throne and could soon be in the market for a mainline custodian, despite recently procuring Costa Rican Keylor Navas, while the same can be said of fellow big-payers Paris Saint-Germain.
Wealthy beyond comprehension they may be, but even this flush pair would struggle to afford Courtois if he extended his Chelsea deal for five years.
While Cesc Fabregas and Diego Costa were undoubtedly essential acquisitions whose quality can’t be contested, they aren’t, on a global scale, the smoothest operators in their respective fields.
Manuel Neuer is the only keeper currently residing on planet Earth who would be considered Courtois’ superior, but a keen debater wouldn’t shy away from arguing the Chelsea number one’s case in this particular battle either.
Their first bullet point would be that the German kept three fewer clean sheets than the latter’s 20 last term.
Owning the best in the business is one thing, but convincing him to commit to the club long-term conveys are different message entirely and it’s for this reason that tying Courtois down is Chelsea’s most important signing of recent months.