Is Juan Mata worth over £35 million?

Manchester United are reported to have tabled a bid fin the region of £35 million for Chelsea's Juan Mata this afternoon.

The dynamic Spanish midfielder has found himself somewhat out of favour since the return of Jose Mourinho and as a result, rumours of his departure from Stamford Bridge have gone into overload.

The 25-year-old Spanish international boasts an impressive record in his time at Chelsea, notching up an impressive 33 goals and 58 assists in two-and-a-half seasons with the Blues.

His contributions even led to him being awarded Chelsea's player of the year for two seasons in a row and he quickly became a fan's favourite. However, not many would have predicted that the return of 'The Special One' would mark the end of Mata's future with the club.

Considering Mourinho's reluctance to make Mata a regular in his line up, would £35m prove to be a little cheeky on Chelsea's part?

It is public knowledge that Moyes is under immense pressure to improve his squad and this may mean that clubs could be inclined to hold United to ransom if one of their players is identified as a target.

This is not to suggest that Mata is not worth £35m in the current market, but considering Chelsea paid £23.5m for him in 2011 and now no longer see him as integral to the team, would it be fair to Mata if no one wants to meet his asking price?

After all, it is not as if Mata has done anything wrong to deserve his admission from the team, but more that his style does not fit into the Mourinho masterplan.

A player of his quality is too good to be warming the bench for a Premier League team, and not even the most ardent of Chelsea fan could claim that he would be wrong to seek a move.

If Manchester United meet their demands and Mata wants the move, then he will be walking into a side that so desperately needs the kind of spark that he has consistently brought to the Premier League.

Even if he comes back to haunt them, Chelsea will have made millions on a player that Mourinho no longer wanted.

images: © Ronnie Macdonald, © Ben Sutherland

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