Chelsea are said to be biding their time over making an improved bid for their leading transfer target Wayne Rooney. Having already had one bid knocked back by Manchester United, Chelsea are set to wait until after the forward has played in Rio Ferdinand’s testimonial next week, in the hope that he gets a less than welcome reception from the Old Trafford faithful, according to The Times.
Jose Mourinho has been open about Chelsea’s interest in Rooney, claiming that he is the only player that he is still trying to add to his squad this summer. But, while the England international is believed to be unhappy at United, they have so far insisted that he is not for sale and turned down Chelsea’s reported initial offer of £20 million.
Rooney’s unhappiness dates back to when he was pushed down the pecking order in the closing weeks of the season. After Sir Alex Ferguson claimed that Rooney had asked to leave the club for the second time in three years. The forward was booed by certain sections of the Old Trafford crowd during the club’s Premier League title celebrations.
And Chelsea could well be hoping that a similar reaction on Aug. 9 could push Rooney to demand to leave while also encouraging United to view the idea of the player staying at the club as an unworkable situation. It remains to be seen just what the reception to Rooney will be, however. After putting in a transfer request in 2010 before subsequently signing a new contract Rooney was cheered by the vast majority of the Manchester United support.
Despite Mourinho’s claims to the contrary, it could be that Chelsea are still in the market for a defensive midfielder. While Daniele de Rossi has been strongly linked, the Sunday People has reported that the Blues are set to make a £15 million offer for Bayern Munich’s Luiz Gustavo. The 26-year-old played a key part for Brazil in their Confederations Cup triumph, but could find his playing time at Bayern even more limited next season than last with the arrival of Thiago Alcantara and Mario Gotze this summer.
With David Luiz continuing to be linked with a move away and Mourinho stating that he sees Branislav Ivanovic primarily as a right-back, Chelsea could yet also enter the market for a central defender. And the Blues have become the latest big-name European club to have been linked with a move for highly rated Brazilian youngster Doria. The 18-year-old left-footed center-back has impressed in his limited appearances for Botafogo and has already earned a full cap for his country.
The Daily Mail believes Chelsea are willing to pay £8.2 million for a player who has also been linked with Juventus. One likely complication for a move to Stamford Bridge could well be attaining a work permit.
One of the rumors swirling around Chelsea this summer has been that Mourinho is not a big fan of the club’s Player of the Season for the past two campaigns, Juan Mata. Having dismissed speculation that the Spanish World Cup and European Championship winner was included in the bid for Rooney, Mourinho has again insisted that he sees a big role for Mata in the upcoming season.
"Of course he fits into my plans," Mourinho said, according to Sky Sports. "I have my idea about him, about where he produces better and where he has more difficulty. We will try to help him perform better in those situations. I've always liked a right-sided player to be left-footed.
"I like wingers coming in on the inside for the penetrative movement, for the pass, for the shot. And Juan is the only player we have to do that on the right. On the left we have [Eden] Hazard, Victor Moses, Kevin De Bruyne, Andre Schurrle. Juan is also very comfortable playing as a No.10. In between these two positions, he has a lot to give to the team."