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Nicolas Otamendi - Porto Defender


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Chelsea 'beat Barcelona and Milan' to signing of Porto defender Nicolas Otamendi

CHELSEA have beaten out a host of big clubs to the signature of Porto's Argentine defender Nicolas Otamendi.

By: Ben JeffersonPublished: Thu, October 3, 2013

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Chelsea have one the race for Nicolas Otamendi [GETTY]

Reports in Spain suggest that Otamendi will move to Stamford Bridge at the start of next season, despite interest from Barcelona and Milan.

Both clubs has unsuccessful negotiations with the Portugese club over signing Otamendi over the summer, but it now seems that the defender is bound for the Blues.

According to Marca, Porto have already accepted that Otamendi will leave at the end of the current term and expect him to move to Chelsea.

Nicolas Otamendi was a target for Barcelona and Milan [GETTY]

Porto have accepted that Nicolas Otamendi will move to Chelsea ahead of next season

Jose Mourinho is thought to be an admirer of Otamendi and it is thought a deal was agreed after the Portugese boss specifically requested that the 25-year-old be added to his squad.

Otamendi started his career in his homeland with Velez Sarsfield before making a £3.5m move to Porto in 2010.

The centre-back has played 15 times for his country after first making his debut under Diego Maradona back in 2009.

http://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/434105/Chelsea-beat-Barcelona-and-Milan-to-signing-of-Porto-defender-Nicolas-Otamendi

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Well well well, interesting one if true, right out of the blue.

 

I remember Otamendi at the last WC. Velez Sarsfield were domestic champions and he had a very big reputation. In fact he was seen as the natural heir to Roberto Ayala, Argentina's legendary captain.

 

Otamendi featured during Maradona's qualifying campaign, a tough, rugged, uncompromising centre-half in the best Argentine tradition. Every big European club had their eye on him.

 

He made the squad for the WC, even though he only had one or two caps I think, and then, inexplicably, Maradona made him play right-back against Germany, a position which was unfamiliar to him and on the biggest of stages against a top side. It was madness. The boy had never played outside Argentina. I wondered if that would shatter his confidence. I remember him being a bit overawed by the experience and Argentina were thrashed. I've forgotten about him since. I have no idea how he's done at Porto but there was no doubt he was a top, top prospect.

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Well well well, interesting one if true, right out of the blue.

 

I remember Otamendi at the last WC. Velez Sarsfield were domestic champions and he had a very big reputation. In fact he was seen as the natural heir to Roberto Ayala, Argentina's legendary captain.

 

Otamendi featured during Maradona's qualifying campaign, a tough, rugged, uncompromising centre-half in the best Argentine tradition. Every big European club had their eye on him.

 

He made the squad for the WC, even though he only had one or two caps I think, and then, inexplicably, Maradona made him play right-back against Germany, a position which was unfamiliar to him and on the biggest of stages against a top side. It was madness. The boy had never played outside Argentina. I wondered if that would shatter his confidence. I remember him being a bit overawed by the experience and Argentina were thrashed. I've forgotten about him since. I have no idea how he's done at Porto but there was no doubt he was a top, top prospect.

 

I'm not sure if my memory is playing tricks on me, but he was indeed Argentina's starting right-back for the latter stages of qualifying and for all their WC games. As far as I can remember he was solid and reliable throughout, and indeed one of the few players from Maradona's era to come out with any credit. I distinctly remember Maradona outlining his trust in him and his general level of assuredness when picking him over Zanetti. Obviously he's best at centre-back but he can just as adequately play over on the right, regardless anyone who cements a regular spot in the Argentinian national team at the age of 23 deserves a lot of praise.

 

I'm in a similar boat to you though; I've hardly watched him for the past two years and I'd appreciate if someone else could give us more insight with regards to his time at Porto.

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Surprised he's only 25, feels like he's been around for a very long time. 

 

Would obviously prefer Mangala if we are after a Porto centre back, but Otamendi would also be a very good signing and I'd imagine his price tag is substantially smaller.

 

Good signing if it's all done and dusted, timings a bit odd, but hey.

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azpilicueta and this fella in defence together will sound like some kind of Greek mythology story.

 

Hopefully not a Greek tragedy!

 

Weren't we looking at the other fella from Porto as well?  Looks as if we're thinking about Terry's replacement.  

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Hopefully not a Greek tragedy!

Weren't we looking at the other fella from Porto as well? Looks as if we're thinking about Terry's replacement.

Ha ha, I thought about saying that but didn't want to tempt fate.
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I'm not sure if my memory is playing tricks on me, but he was indeed Argentina's starting right-back for the latter stages of qualifying and for all their WC games. As far as I can remember he was solid and reliable throughout, and indeed one of the few players from Maradona's era to come out with any credit. I distinctly remember Maradona outlining his trust in him and his general level of assuredness when picking him over Zanetti. Obviously he's best at centre-back but he can just as adequately play over on the right, regardless anyone who cements a regular spot in the Argentinian national team at the age of 23 deserves a lot of praise.

 

I'm in a similar boat to you though; I've hardly watched him for the past two years and I'd appreciate if someone else could give us more insight with regards to his time at Porto.

 

Again I'm relying on memory but he played CB for Argentina during the qualifiers, and only towards the end of their campaign, once Maradona had taken over. We have to remember Maradona experimented with a lot of players, but, as you say, Otamendi was one of his rare successes, the guy seemed like the real deal and had the reputation to match. He went into the WC with very few caps to his name, he was new to the squad, and he certainly wasn't a RB, but as you say, he played 3 or 4 games during the WC, and all as RB. Still, he was out of his depth against Germany and it was an insane selection, especially considering Zabaleta and Zanetti weren't even included. Germany were a top team, it was a knockout game, and the guy had never faced that level of opposition. He would have been 21 at the time. I think he disappeared a bit after that in international terms. Yes he has 15 caps but that means he's played about 10 games in the last 3 years, and you have to remember Argentina play a lot of friendlies, for economic reasons. I certainly haven't heard his name for a long time but when I first saw him he was mighty impressive, and up until the Germany game, he had had a fine WC. He needed a better mentor than Maradona, who fed him to the lions.

 

Argentina make very eccentric choices for their national teams, principally because they have very eccentric managers and their players are scattered across the globe. I wouldn't look at his appearances or his age as a barometer. Remember they played Scaloni at RB instead of Zanetti in 2006 and they played Demichelis at the last WC, who I do not rate at all, when they had far better CBs to choose from. Right now Coloccini is in their side and he's nowhere near up to scratch. He's vastly overrated IMO.

 

Edit: I would be interested to hear what anyone who has seen Otamendi play for Porto regularly has to say. Sure, he has CL experience, but at 25, he really needs to progress to a top league if he has aspirations of being a top player.

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Didn't even see this thread.

 

I can't remember too much of what he was like for Argentina during Maradona's reign so I can't really draw a comparison but the problem with Otamendi is that he's slow (probably the second slowest player at Porto after Lucho), lacks strength and isn't very good in the air, although the latter is something he's worked hard on over the years and there has been visible improvements.

 

Also something that's started happening pretty regularly with him is that he just losses concentration and shuts down, it's become more frequent than in the past which is odd for quite a few reasons, one being that it's suppose to be the other way around as you get older and the other being that he's, normally, pretty good at reading the game and has very good leadership skills. I would put it down to form but it's been going on for a year now and probably part the reason why he's not getting call ups for his national team. 

 

I'm not sure if I would be happy with us signing him or not. If it was for £15m or less (unlikely) then I would be pretty content, anything more and I don't think it would be worth it. Not to mention that I don't really think he would fit into our current defence, a paring of Otamendi and Cahill would probably be the safest option as they both nullify each others weakness but any other combination would be a disaster unless we played deep.  

 

Like others have said, Mangala would by far be the better option even if we have to pay that bit more. Or we could just, you know, play Omeruo and Kalas. 

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