Chelsea to Swoosh into Nike Era with Transfer Bang

As July 1st approaches, many clubs have already tied up a few deals to appease their fans and follow the ‘get your business done early’ trend. Such is the current nature of the transfer market, and it’s relationship with social media, that every day feels like a lifetime in the tornado of rumours and scoops from Twitter famous journalists. That platform, in particular, is one big tug-of-war between accounts of transfer moguls, hardcore fan accounts and even the players themselves.

One club that epitomises this approach is Chelsea. As they tied up the title at a canter, newspapers filled their pages with claims that Antonio Conte would be backed with all the money in the world to rejuvenate his squad. The memory of the 2015/16 campaign – when José Mourinho/Guus Hiddink led the champions to a pathetically embarrassing 10th place – still lingers in the nostrils of Blues’ fans, and the hunger to kick on from the league win is stronger than ever.

New Sponsor, New Start

Due to the transition from Adidas to Nike, which will become official on July 1st, Chelsea have been quiet as anything in this window so far. This, understandably, caused a bit of a raucous response from Chelsea fans on social media and even led to a story breaking that Conte could leave Stamford Bridge after only one season. That story was quashed almost immediately, and the conveyor belt of rumours regarding Chelsea’s business and negotiations kicked back into gear.

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Many Chelsea fans seem to be expecting a grand Nike launch press conference to take place, with every transfer target we have dramatically revealed in the new kits amidst blue fireworks. As great as that would be, Premier League football isn’t quite as WWE  as that just yet. That’s not to say big things won’t happen. Nike and Adidas vary in their approach; with the former’s American origins predictably proving to be more showy and brazen than the latter’s German sleek modesty. With Nike (and a £60million-per-year deal) in the picture you always feel like anything is possible.

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The Other Juventus

As you enter the Mooca neighbourhood, the Italian influence is clear. Small restaurants pump the aroma of pizza, pasta and pastries into the street. The Portuguese of the locals is injected with the odd Italian expression or mannerism. Fingers come together and flick up and down in a sign of exaggeration or dissent. It’s an authentic taste of the European peninsula in the middle of South America’s biggest city, São Paulo.

As you wander the streets of the quaint neighbourhood, one thing stays constant; the colour maroon and the letter J. Walls are painted with murals dedicated to the local football team, as is often the case in South American neighbourhoods. Shops and café are branded, officially or unofficially, with the badge and name of the club. Cars are decorated with the club’s window stickers and locals walk the street in various editions of the shirt. It’s clear that this is a Paulista community that breathes through a little football team.

This little football team is Juventus.

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Well, Clube Atlético Juventus to be exact. One of the most iconic names in football has a second home, 5849 miles away, in the narrow streets of São Paulo. The comparison and contrasts between the two fit the big brother/little brother mould beautifully.

The Italian outfit’s nickname, The Old Lady, is one of the most memorable in football, and the Brazilian side have a brilliantly complimentary alternative. They are warmly known as the Moleque Travesso (The Prankster Boy) and live up to the name by playing in the colours of Torino FC, the city rivals of the Italian champions. The metaphorical image of a small Brazilian team teasing a respected Italian stalwart of football is undeniably satisfying.

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