The sudden and swift acquisition of Juan Mata by Manchester United seemed to have hit a bog, but with Jose Mourinho speaking on the near-completed deal earlier today, it’s now even closer.
Manchester United today confirmed via Twitter that the club has agreed with Chelsea on a club-record transfer fee for the 25-year-old Spaniard.
Personal terms have yet to be agreed upon and a medical still must be completed, but by all accounts the player is up for the switch.
No specific number was given by the Manchester club, and they said further announcements would come “in due time.”
However, with confirmation that the deal is a club record, it surpasses the fee they paid Tottenham Hotspur for Dimitar Berbatov in 2008, reportedly around £31 million ($51.1 million). Mata’s fee should exceed that by a considerable amount.
The deal is an outstanding one for all parties.
Manchester United get their playmaker to carry the burden of bringing the club back into the top four. Sir Alex Ferguson and David Moyes both still believe the club can challenge for the title (publicly, at least), but realistically that’s way beyond lost.
Chelsea sold a player they weren’t using, and while it’s to a Premier League rival, Arsene Wenger can pipe down since Moyes and company are far behind in the title race (and one only needs to conjure up the words “Van Persie” and they have proof of the Arsenal manager’s hypocrisy).
Mata is goalless on the year, but has 17 goals and 30 assists the previous two Premier League seasons with Chelsea.