If the reports were true, Manchester City were considering a deadline-day double – bringing in Fernando and Eliaquim Mangala from FC Porto.
In the end, no such deal occurred, despite reports of private jets and £35million transfers, with both players remaining in Portugal until the summer.
At that point, if Fernando does not sign a new deal in the interim, he will be a free-agent, while Mangala will be thrust back into the rumour mill with his £42million release-clause perhaps the only remaining stumbling block.
While City were tipped to return in the summer – for one or both players depending on what you read and who you believe – Sambafoot is now reporting that Portuguese newspaper A Bola claims both players could soon be on their way to Stamford Bridge.
However, before Chelsea fans get too excited, it is worth noting Jose Mourinho’s own comments as he prepares to face City this evening.
When asked if he would be moving for Mangala he is quoted by the Guardian as saying, “We can’t. We signed (Kurt) Zouma who is even younger and a comparable figure.”
Given that the Blues have recently welcomed Nemanja Matic back to the club, a move for another central midfielder – given the presence of the likes of Ramires and John Obi Mikel – also seems unlikely.
But Fernando is a quality player and few could turn him down for free; while Mangala is not one for the future like Zouma. He is ready to step into the starting line-up of most clubs in Europe.
So although another transfer window has only just closed the rumours have started already…or perhaps they never went away.
Only time will tell if the Porto pair end up at Chelsea, or City, or somewhere else entirely.
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