- Premier League
United agree £37m deal for Mata
Manchester United have agreed a fee of £37 million for Chelsea playmaker Juan Mata, according to ESPN sources.
The two parties spent Wednesday haggling over the transfer fee, with United said to have offered £35 million and Chelsea holding out for £42 million. It is believed a fee of £37 million has now be settled and the player will head to United's Carrington training complex for a medical and to discuss personal terms on Thursday.
Mata missed training with Chelsea on Wednesday morning as he pushed for a move to the Premier League champions to be completed.
Jose Mourinho is believed to have provisionally approved the sale on Monday, as long as Chelsea officials are happy with all the details. Mata was never more than a bit-part player under Mourinho despite being their Player of the Year in his first two seasons at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea would still have preferred to sell to either Paris Saint-Germain or Atletico Madrid, but ESPN sources close to the negotiations have said Mata has made it known that his first choice is United. Atletico are, however, prepared to act in the unlikely event of the deal now collapsing.
Mata expressing his desire to go to Old Trafford was always going to be a key factor in forcing the move once United renewed their interest, which was first reported by ESPN on January 2.
Despite speculation, Wayne Rooney is not expected to go in the other direction to Chelsea, although there is a growing acceptance at United that he will not sign a new contract and that they will be forced to sell him in the summer.