Chelsea are finally willing to make the ‘big’ splash, not Wayne Rooney yet, but a 25-year-old Brazilian, Willian. The club have agreed a £30m deal to sign the midfielder from Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala, subject to work permit hearing.
After failing to join Liverpool, Willian was on the verge of moving to Tottenham Hotspur and had even underwent a Spurs’ medical on Wednesday.
The White Hart Lane club were fully expecting to make him their fifth major summer signing.
But Reports suggest Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich stepped in at around 1800BST (7:00GMT+1) on Thursday, using his contacts at Anzhi (a fellow Russian owner of the club, Suleyman Kerimov) to offer a similar fee to Tottenham’s, but with more lucrative add-ons.
He is expected to have his medical at Chelsea before his work permit hearing next week.
On completion of the deal, the Brazilian will become ‘The Blues’s’ third major summer signing following the introduction of Germany international Andre Schurrle and Netherland’s midfielder Marco van Ginkel into the “Blues’ Family.”
Willian has not yet agreed personal terms but he is on course to join Chelsea, where the opportunity of playing in the Champions League has prompted his decision.
When quizzed on Friday on the probability of landing the Brazil midfielder, Portuguese tactician, Jose Mourinho said:
That’s a good question because I think he’s already made his decision.
“If you remember, I said I am happy with my squad but every manager says we are happy but we almost want something more and we never close the door.
“Before the Villa game I told you that we had plan B and Plan C. The point is not to sell, I want a 22-man squad. We do not need to sell,” added Mourinho.
Willian joined Anzhi from Shakhtar Donetsk in January for a reported £30m. He became available following a change in strategy by the Russian club who are determined to cut cost.
Tottenham were looking to break there transfer record for the third time this summer for the Brazil international who has now opted to join Mourinho at Stamford Bridge.