News, views and rumours relating to Manchester United the past 24 hours.
Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata was expected to undergo a medical today at Manchester United after the two clubs agreed a fee of £37 million for the 25-year-old Spain playmaker who is set to become a club record signing.
The deal, however, is now expected to be confirmed next week with Monday the earliest Mata will be officially unveiled as the newest addition to David Moyes’ Red Devils.
The deal to bring Mata to Old Trafford has been delayed by Chelsea with the Spaniard now expected to undergo his medical over the weekend.
The Independent reports that United’s ‘row’ with Chelsea over Wayne Rooney this summer may have had an impact on the deal to bring Juan Mata to the Premier League champions. The two rival clubs are thought to have used a ‘third party’ to negotiate the deal.
The BBC, however, report that Chelsea’s deal to sign Mohamed Salah has held up the deal for Mata instead.
Meanwhile, Wayne Rooney’s agent has ‘held talks’ with United chief executive Ed Woodward over his future. The England number ten has 18 months left on his current deal and has yet to agree to an extension.
The striker’s agent Paul Stretford is understood to have met with club representatives at their Carrington training ground this week as speculation over his future continues.
Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini believes United should not be ‘allowed’ to sign Mata, echoing complaints from Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger yesterday over the ‘unfairness’ of the deal.
"Personally I don’t agree that the player can go from one team to another team in the same league at this part of the year but rules are rules and he can change clubs,” said the Chilean.
Legendary boss Sir Alex Ferguson believes United still have a chance of winning the title this season in the Premier League, despite a tough and disappointing start following the Scot’s retirement in June and replacement by David Moyes.
"I'm not writing anyone off," said the 72-year-old
"I find it very difficult to pick the top four. I find it even more difficult to say who is going to win the league."
Ferguson has been appointed head of UEFA coaching group announced today by Michel Platini.
"It is an honour and a privilege to accept this role as ambassador for Uefa," said the former Red Devils manager.
"I can watch the team whenever I want and I've really enjoyed it. I'm going as a supporter now and instead of suffering with the team, I'm suffering or enjoying it with the fans. I'm really enjoying watching the team play," he explained.
In team news, midfielder Michael Carrick has been ruled out for three weeks with an ankle injury amidst fears he may have suffered ligament damage.
Elsewhere, United youngster Jack Barmby joins Hartlepool on loan for a month.
Finally, youngster Wilfried Zaha is set to sign for Cardiff on loan for the remainder of the season after undergoing a medical in the Welsh capital.
image: © Paolo Camera