Reports in Spanish media claim that Barcelona are preparing a move for Manchester United‘s Juan Mata.
The La Liga side have been long-term admirers of the Spanish international and wanted to sign him back in 2010. They are now considering signing the player and want to get the deal done even after they understand it would be very difficult to get the transfer done.
Barcelona have a transfer ban imposed on them at the moment for breaching rules on the acquisition of players aged under 18, and would not be able to land the player till next year (January 2016). But it seems like the club is willing to wait till next year to get Mata.
Naturally, it won’t be easy for them to carry out this deal because of this complicated ban and also because Manchester United would want to make the majority of the £37.1m fee they paid to sign him from Chelsea last year.
Manchester United signed the 26 year old in January 2014 when they paid Chelsea a then club record fee of £37.1 million, with Mata signing a contract until the summer of 2018. Mata signed for United after being receded to the bench at Chelsea with Oscar, Hazard and Willian being preferred in the attacking role instead. The Spanish international now finds himself in a similar situation to the one he escaped at Stamford Bridge last January, with first-team football no longer a given at Old Trafford. Di Maria has been preferred centrally by boss Louis van Gaal, and captain Wayne Rooney has been slotted in the midfield by the Dutchman.
Mata has played 37 times for Manchester United and has 12 goals to his name. While the player is obviously a valuable asset to have within the ranks for United, his first team involvement is not guaranteed so he could get tempted to move to one of the biggest clubs in Europe. Moreover, the lure of going back to his homeland might also play a role. However, Mata still has one year before his reported suitors make a move and a lot can change in that time.