Matteo Darmian has reportedly fallen out of favour with Jose Mourinho, with the Portuguese preferring Antonio Valencia in the right-back position. He could be reunited with his former Italian coach Antonio Conte, come January.
Darmian is yet to feature for the Red Devils this season under Jose Mourinho and Chelsea are reportedly interested in signing him. He is likely to be allowed to leave Old Trafford in the January window.
The 26-year-old moved to Old Trafford last summer and featured 28 times in the Premier League last season under Louis van Gaal.
According to Italian publication Calcio Mercato, Conte wants to bring the former Torino player to Stamford Bridge.
Even though Chelsea have signed centre back David Luiz and right back Marcus Alonso, the Blues seem to lack options at the back.
Ivanovic’s performance has been way below par and it remains to be seen how long the club keeps him. Terry is ageing and Cahill is not exactly agile. The only decent option they have at the back is Kurt Zouma, who is yet to feature after his injury, and Cesar Azpilicueta.
So Darmian, having played under Conte when he was manager of the Italian national squad, looks to be a decent and viable option for the Blues.
Darmian was brought to United by Van Gaal last summer from Serie A side Torino. He made a bright start – helping the club win five of their first seven league games – but a 3-0 defeat against Arsenal in November sparked a huge dip in form. He struggled to get back to his best ever since and reports in Italy have suggested that the defender’s relationship with Mourinho is strained.
Darmian would provide better defensive options for Chelsea, who were really desperate for defenders in this summer’s transfer window and his previous experience with Conte would also come in handy.
Serie A clubs Juventus and Napoli are also interested in the Italian international, and both could be ready to table a bid for the 26-year-old.
Reports earlier in the summer suggested Barcelona had been targeting Darmian as a replacement for the Juventus-bound Dani Alves.