£15m Chelsea linked ace signs deal which replaces Romeu at La Liga rich-kids Valencia

Mestalla Valencia

Chelsea linked Andre Gomes has sealed a transfer to Valencia.

Chelsea signed one player from Benfica in January in Nemanja Matic, but a year earlier they were strongly linked with another.

Portuguese newspaper A Bola reported 12 months earlier that Andre Gomes was on their radar: "Mourinho is pushing Roman Abramovich to make a financial effort to bring the player of 19 years to Stamford Bridge this summer already."

Gomes, now 20, has this week clinched a deal to sign with Valencia instead, who are putting together a side to challenge for the top at La Liga after being taken over by billionaire Peter Lim.

He undertook a medical yesterday, completing a switch in a deal which still has impact for Chelsea.

Gomes is a defensive midfielder, and the transfer was a case of Valencia making their own plans, abandoning any possibility of bringing back last season's loanee Oriol Romeu, who himself signed a new contract with the Blues yesterday.

The former Barcelona trainee made 18 appearances for the La Liga side in a bounce-back year for him, after suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury with Chelsea a year earlier, just as he was getting a run of games under then manager Rafa Benitez.

Romeu was included in Chelsea's squad to face Wycombe Wanderers on Wednesday night, playing 70 minutes, and spoke afterwards to discuss his time last season.

"I learned a lot, I played 16 or 17 games so it was good in the end. I’m here now to look to the future, the past is gone, I have to fight and we’ll see what happens. The staff are happy with me, I’m training well and doing what I have to do, I have to keep going like this."

Romeu desperately needs momentum and regular football, but his new contract is a sign of his faith in the club and vice versa, despite recent additions in midfield and continued links to players like Paul Pogba.

Valencia's move for Gomes means the Spaniards had either closed the door on bringing him back; or learned of his intention to stay at Chelsea long before the deal was signed.

Romeu needs to stick it out at Chelsea and see if he can continue to impress; being given so much time against Wycombe was a key first step, now he needs to keep this going across the next month to show Jose Mourinho he is worth a place in the squad next season, and they didn't need to spend on a player like the former Benfica man in any case.

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