Manchester United are set to seal the signing of Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic.
Jose Mourinho switched his attention to the Serbian earlier this summer when they backed off a bid for Tiemoue Bakayoko – knowing that the Monaco midfielder would be taking Matic’s place in the Chelsea squad having joined The Blues.
Now Chelsea have given their blessing to the deal, after the 28-year-old made it known to them that he wanted to join United rather than others – with the likes of Juventus and Inter Milan, who had shown interest.
There had been some thought that Chelsea would not want to do business with United after they hijacked their bid for Romelu Lukaku earlier in the summer.
But Antonio Conte has made it clear that Matic was surplus to requirements and Chelsea bosses have accepted that they cannot rejected the £40million that United will be paying for him.
Matic was in his season spell with Chelsea having been sold to Benfica earlier in his career before rejoining in January 2014, and he enjoyed his second stint picking up two title winning medals – and it is performances and services for the club that have seen the Premier League champions allow him to join one of their rivals.
Bookmakers across the board have closed their markets on Matic making the move, and we spoke to BetVictor’s Head of antepost Football Michael Triffitt.
“The Red Devils are expected to officially announce the signing shortly. The player was backed into 1/10 to make the move north although Italian giants Juventus were the best backed outfit to recruit him so it wasn’t all one way traffic in the betting market.
“United remain a top price 4/1 to lift the Premier League title next year although that price is proving popular and coming under threat it may not last that long!”
With the Matic deal just about done, United will turn their attentions to their other remaining target Ivan Perisic – with the club ready to broker a deal with Inter Milan for the Croatian midfielder.