Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea look set to hijack Manchester United’s move for Inter Milan player Fredy Guarin. Italian website Football Italia have reported today that Guarin has agreed a move to Stamford Bridge.
It was reported across Italian and English media last week that Red Devils had made the first contact with Inter for the versatile Colombian midfielder and had also sent the representatives to initiate preliminary activities related to the transfer.
Guarin, however, would prefer a move to the west London club and sees the chance to play under Jose Mourinho as a decisive factor.
Inter directors Piero Ausilio and Marco Branca were reportedly in London last week to discuss the deal but the club’s newly appointed president Erick Thohir will have the final say as to whether the transfer will be sanctioned.
However, Chelsea are apparently willing to offer €15m for a player who cost the Nerazzurri €11.5m from Porto in 2012.
The player’s agent will also hold discussions with the English giants to discuss personal terms. A three-and-a-half year contract is being prepared.
The 27-year-old has scored 14 goals in 71 games for the Beneamata since his move to Italy. He’s also played for Saint-Etienne in Europe.
Guarin’s contract at Inter runs until 2016 and his agent recently declined to comment publicly on United’s efforts to sign him, except to state that “David Moyes appreciates him”.
Mourinho said in the last week that he would not be looking to freshen up his squad in January, claiming: “Of course we want the best possible results but I am not waiting for players, I am not asking for players. This is a period for the club and this is a period of my team where we have to try and improve the players we have and try to build a future. It is my squad. For good and for bad, it is my squad. Of course, it is not the perfect squad but it is my squad and I work with them until the last day. To criticise does not help me. What do I win by criticizing my players? I win nothing.”
However, Chelsea are lacking a quality enforcer this season as Michael Essien is well past his best days and Frank Lampard struggling with his form. And the Portuguese may see the opportunity to add Guarin’s talent and industry which are too good to miss.
Moyes is said to be under growing pressure to recruit at least one quality midfielder this winter having spent significantly more on his one signing thus far, Marouane Fellaini, who is struggling to adjust at such big club. Fredy Guarin’s decision to snub United’s interest would represent another damaging blow to United’s reputation in the transfer market following a forgettable summer which saw failed moves for Ander Herrera, Cesc Fabregas and Thiago Alcantara.