Manchester United are reportedly lining up a massive bid for out of favour Chelsea FC midfielder Juan Mata.

Juan Mata - Chelsea

Juan Mata is enduring a torrid season personally under the new Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho. The Spaniard, who has been Chelsea player of the season twice in a row since his arrival at the club from Valencia back in 2011, has made only 11 starts in the league so far this season. Jose Mourinho has already stated that he prefers Oscar for the role of a play-maker in this side, while current form of Eden Hazard and Willian have virtually made them un-droppable from the side. Mata is clearly the time of player Mourinho doesn’t fancy, but given his previous record and contribution to the club one would have expected him to receive more opportunities.

The Spanish international is desperate for regular first team action ahead of the World Cup as he is aware of the depth of talent that Spain have in that department. Mata is reportedly willing to leave the club in this window and Manchester United are looking to take advantage of this situation. United were linked with a move for him in the summer as well, but with Chelsea’s interest in Wayne Rooney, things became too complicated and none of the deal materialized.

Recent reports suggest that Manchester United are lining up a £37million bid for Mata in the next two days. United have struggled in the league this season under David Moyes and they are expected to make a big signing in this window to lift the squad and atmosphere at the club. Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville is unsure about the requirement of Mata in this United side, but believes it could be the start of something positive for the club.

“That’s a lot of money, 37 million quid, but they need a signing.

“Does he fit with what I would call the typical philosophy of Manchester United? I would say no.

“The first question, I think, is where are you going to play? Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie are up top if they are fit so where are you going to play him? Are you going to play him off the left or off the right?

“We’ve seen Kagawa play off the left, we saw Kleberson play at times off the left, we’ve seen Veron at Manchester United move to the left because you can’t play central midfield.

“Maybe they have to change the philosophy and maybe that’s what David Moyes is thinking. Maybe he wants to play narrow wide players and maybe a three in midfield.

“They would have to change to accommodate Juan Mata in the way they normally play. They normally play with wide players. Sometimes they tuck in, but generally they have wide players and the thing for me is where is he going to play?

“He’s obviously a fantastic football player, there’s no doubt about that, but one thing it does do, I suppose, is that David Moyes, Manchester United and Ed Woodward need to sign a big player.

“They need to make a noise and if they get him in it will attract potentially other players – and they need three or four players.

“What it could be is the start of something to lead to other things, but typically I wouldn’t say he fits.” – Neville said in a TV show.

Mata could well turn out to be an Ozil-esque signing for the reigning Premier League champions. The former Real Madrid star wasn’t something that Arsenal immediately needed, but his arrival lifted the club and that positive impact has provided a chain reaction and the Gunners now find themselves at the top of the table. But it will be interesting to see if Jose Mourinho is willing to do business with United, considering how they rejected their effort to sign Rooney in the summer. We have certainly not heard the last of this story.