Chelsea may move for stranded Benatia

Mehdi Benatia playing for Morocco

Roma defender Mehdi Benatia has been left in an awkward position after believing he would sign for Manchester City, but Chelsea might rescue him.

The breakdown of a possible move to Manchester City disappointed Roma defender Mehdi Benatia but he may still get a chance to play in the Premier League.

The Moroccan international was instrumental in Roma's excellent 2013-14 campaign and his value shot up during the season.

Benatia's head seemed to be turned by press links with some of Europe's biggest clubs and he reportedly demanded a vast pay rise from Roma.

That tactic may well have been to try and force a move away and Manchester City seemed to be interested in putting down around £25 million.

In the end though the Premier League champions appear to have opted to pursue Porto's Eliaquim Mangala instead, to the apparent dismay of Benatia who had thought a move was on.

Benatia has told fans that he expects to start next season at Roma, but he did so with an air of reluctance, suggesting that his relationship with the club has been damaged.

There may be a third option though with reports from Sky Italia that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is keen on securing Benatia's signature.

Chelsea have previously been linked with the 27-year-old and the sale of David Luiz may have created the opportunity for the deal to happen. 

While Roma will be reticent to let go of one of their stars, the Lupi will also be aware that Benatia could be lacking motivation if he stays.

Roma sporting director Walter Sabatini started the summer stating that Benatia wasn't for sale at any price but he seemed to slightly backtrack when the extent of the stopper's wanderlust became apparent.

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