One of the Stamford Bridge side's standout performers this season could have been a Blanco rather than a Blue…
Chelsea's influential attacker Oscar, a 22-year-old acquired by the West London outfit last year in a £19.35m deal from Internacional, has revealed that he could have signed for Jose Mourinho the same year - when the Portuguese was bossing affairs at Real Madrid.
'A month before signing for Chelsea I was very close to doing so with Real Madrid as Mourinho said he wanted me,' said the Brazilian when speaking with Globoesporte. 'They came to watch me in the game against Denmark. Before the games there were talks with Madrid, but they had the playmaker position well covered.
'After the games, I signed for Chelsea. Upon [Jose's] arrival at Chelsea, Mourinho spoke to me. He gives me confidence and I'm trying to return all such support on the pitch.'
Under Mourinho, Oscar is thriving.
The player, despite his inexperience in European football, played a key role in the club's Premier League campaign last term and was a regular in their Europa League push, too, returning 12 goals from 64 appearances in all competitions.
This year, in 839 minutes of Premier League action, he has completed 84% of his 478 pass attempts, has won an extraordinary 88% of his 25 tackles, has won 13 fouls, created 14 chances, found the heads of seven team-mates when crossing and has netted four times.
image: © Ben Sutherland