Jose Mourinho has cleared the air on Juan Mata and David Luiz, stating that neither player will be leaving Stamford Bridge this summer.
On Tuesday morning the British media was rampant with reports that Chelsea had launched an audacious swap-plus-cash deal in a bid to sign Wayne Rooney from Manchester United.
The initial terms set forth were that Mourinho had offered $15 million (£10m) plus Mata and Luiz in exchange for the English striker. Perhaps even more sensationally, the reports claimed that United had immediately rejected the bid.
It later emerged that, while reports were correct that United had rejected the bid, it was not a swap-plus-cash deal but rather a straight $30 million (£20m) offer.
‘Fair play’, we collectively said with a sigh of relief. Because United would have been crazier than a bag of kittens not to switch Wazza for $15m plus Mata and Luiz.
Heck, most of us would’ve dealt Rooney for Mata and Luiz alone, or just Mata and cash. This is especially the case considering United’s surplus of strikers and the pressing needs to boost its midfield.
So with the terms side of the story buttoned up, question marks still remained concerning Mata and Luiz’ place at Chelsea after reports surfaced earlier this summer indicating that they may not fit into Mourinho’s scheme.
The reports were mind-boggling: Why on earth would Mourinho want to sell Mata, who is arguably his best player, and Luiz, who is fast-becoming one of the most feared defenders in the world?
The long and the short of it is these questions are now moot as Mourinho could not have been clearer when asked about the possibility of selling either player: “No chance. No chance.”
Right then. Chelsea fans will be delighted.
You can find Mike on Twitter @mprindi