at the Union Buildings in Pretoria
Manchester United are confident of landing Juan Mata from Chelsea in a £37million deal by the end of the week.
Talks regarding the 25-year-old Spain midfielder are so far advanced that Mata is convinced he will have a medical before the weekend.
And although United are treating the deal with extreme caution after their failure to land a string of big names last summer, manager David Moyes believes the move is close to being concluded.
Mata is determined to leave Chelsea after becoming frustrated with his failure to impress Jose Mourinho this season.
United, who are six points off fourth place in the Barclays Premier League, are under financial pressure to qualify for the Champions League. And although the transfer fee is a huge increase on the £23.5m Chelsea paid Valencia in 2011, Moyes is keen to land a big signing in the transfer window.
Mata is determined to push through the move and Mourinho is understood to have accepted that he wants to leave in search of first-team football.
The midfielder has concerns about his inclusion in Spain’s World Cup squad this summer if he is not playing regularly for his club side and Moyes will give him that opportunity as he starts building a team for the future.
United are treading carefully only because Moyes and his chief executive Ed Woodward failed to sign the likes of Thiago Alcantara and Cesc Fabregas during the summer.
But this time they have been given all the encouragement they need that Mata wants to leave Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea’s player of the year for the past two seasons has not featured in the club’s last three games.
After he stormed off at Southampton on New Year’s Day, Mourinho admitted he would listen to offers, prompting United to make their move. – Daily Mail