Why Mourinho's interest in Falcao sends a strong message to Manchester United

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Is the Chelsea boss directly challenging United by considering the Colombian?

Jose Mourinho recently confirmed Chelsea's interest in Radamel Falcao.

Statistically, a move for the former Manchester United man makes little sense. Yet popular opinion seems to suggest the Colombian would be a great signing for the Blues.

Again, looking at the figures, it's a puzzling thought that a striker with just four Premier League goals last season could add anything to the league champions. That's not to mention his wages.

But could Mourinho be sending Manchester United a strong message by signing him - that Chelsea's midfielders are so much better than United's that they will get the best out of Falcao?

  GoalsAssistsChances CreatedFinal-Third PassesAppearancesMinutes Played
Diego Costa 20 3 40 300 26 2,082
Eden Hazard 14 9 101 1,165 38 3,372
Loïc Remy 7 0 5 85 19 665
Oscar 6 8 36 435 28 2,034
John Terry 5 0 7 78 38 3,420
Didier Drogba 4 1 14 98 28 856
Falcao 4 4 18 109 26 1,286

As Opta stats show, five Chelsea players scored more league goals than the Colombian last term, including defender John Terry and a striker in Loic Remy who played half as many minutes. But, should the 29-year-old move to Stamford Bridge, it could be Mourinho's way of directly challenging the quality of Manchester United's side.

Falcao's own lack of form and injury problems undoubtedly impeded him at Old Trafford - and he will more than likely be a back-up choice at Stamford Bridge - but signing him suggests the Chelsea boss clearly feels his midfielders can get more out of him.

Where Angel Di Maria and Juan Mata may have failed, Eden Hazard and Oscar may succeed. Where Michael Carrick, Daley Blind and Ander Herrera couldn't prevail, Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic may break through. A Chelsea Falcao could be three times the player the Manchester United Falcao was.

By signing the Colombian, then, Mourinho will be paying his Chelsea side the ultimate tribute, while at the same time making a classic Mourinhoesque statement about United.

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