Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 21 August 2014

Jose Mourinho's intent on keeping Juan Mata and Kevin De Bruyne at Chelsea

Jose Mourinho wants to keeps Mata
Jose Mourinho wants to keeps Mata

Jose Mourinho has insisted he wants to keep Juan Mata and Kevin De Bruyne at Chelsea and told any players who wish to leave Stamford Bridge this month that they will not be sold on the cheap.

Mata reacted angrily to being substituted in Wednesday's Premier League win at Southampton and afterwards Mourinho suggested the "door was open" should Chelsea's player of the year for the past two seasons wish to leave.

Belgium forward De Bruyne has also been linked with a move after being frustrated by a lack of opportunities this term, but Mourinho is not intending to allow any players a soft exit in a warning to suitors of his players.

Mourinho said: "If people think they can get our good players on sale, sales finished in London yesterday."

There have been reports of interest from Paris St Germain, Napoli, Inter Milan and Manchester United, among others, in Mata, but Mourinho insisted no offers have been received and praised the World Cup-winner's performance in training ahead of tomorrow's FA Cup third-round clash at Derby.

"I keep saying that I want him to stay," Mourinho said.

"There isn't offers. We have no offers. When I said 'I don't want him to leave', he was focused on that and not focused on when I said 'the door is always open'.

"Today he trained in a fantastic way, so no problems."

De Bruyne has struggled to break into the Chelsea first team after being integrated into the squad following loan spells in the first 18 months of his Blues career.

"We know that he (De Bruyne) fancies a move, but he is a fantastic player and fantastic players are very expensive," Mourinho said.

"I don't want him to leave, but we have a couple of contacts, made not by us, because we don't want to sell. We know that Kevin didn't adapt very well to the difficult life a Chelsea player has.

"(He was a) very important player for Genk, very important player for Werder Bremen. It's the first time he comes to a big club with big competition. They have to accept this competitiveness."

Chelsea have been linked with purchases this month, particularly a striker.

Mourinho quashed reports of a £50m offer for Napoli's Argentina striker Gonzalo Higuain, who played under him at Real Madrid.

Mourinho said: "Nothing is true about Gonzalo. He's a player that I know we cannot get.

"He's a player that moved from Real to Napoli six months ago, he's doing very well, he's adapting very well to Italy.

"I don't believe they're interested in selling Higuain."

Mourinho again was adamant Chelsea will not be particularly active during the winter transfer window and insisted a striker is not on his shopping list.

"A striker, 100% no," he said.

"The market is open, but for us, almost closed."

Mourinho believes his current squad, third in the Premier League and in the knockout stages of the Champions League, is capable of challenging for top honours this season and will be even better next term.

He added: "This squad is good enough for my first season and for the objectives of the first season and to prepare the next season.

"We are preparing the future but competing in the present.

"We are going to fight every game.

"We are going to try to win every game in every competition.

"We are favourites for nothing. We just want to be favourites for the next game, it's our philosophy."

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