French international would snub Manchester City for Stamford Bridge…
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A star French international has put Chelsea on red alert after admitting he’d prefer to play for Jose Mourinho’s side than sign for Premier League champions Manchester City.
Eliaquim Mangala, the central defender who currently plays for FC Porto in Portugal, has dampened his chances of joining Manuel Pellegrini’s with his latest comments.
“City or Chelsea? Chelsea because it’s London. It’s true that I love the Premier League, it is a spectacular league,” Mangala told Bein Sport, reported in the Daily Star.
“In January, there were discussions with City but they fell through because the two clubs could not agree.”
City were rated as heavy favourites to sign both Mangala and his Brazilian club teammate Fernando, but his chances of joining City have surely diminished, after his public declaration of a preference to move to Stamford Bridge.
The 23-year-old did however leave the door open to an Etihad move, by claiming he’ll eventually be happy to move to any side capable of winning trophies.
“Every player wants to play in the biggest clubs. I am an ambitious player and the team that can help me win titles is the one that interests me,” he said.
Chelsea currently deploy the excellent pairing of Gary Cahill and John Terry, who’s recently signed a new contract, at the heart of the defence. The Blues had the Premier League’s best defensive record by far last term, conceding just the 27 goals, so Mangala would have some difficulty getting in the side even a transfer was eventually completed.
Mourinho may be keen on brining in a direct replacement for David Luiz however, who is rumoured to be leaving to join Barcelona.
Mangala has won just the two caps for France, but is expected to start for his country at this summer’s World Cup. For Porto last term, he made 32 appearances in all competitions, impressing with five goals, and establishing a reputation as one of Europe’s most coveted defenders.
He’s tall and rangy, but prides himself on his composure with the ball at this feet, like most top modern centre-backs. He joined Porto from Standard Liege in 2011 for €7.5m, where he has continued to improve.
If he were to move to either of the Premier League giants though, it would likely be for an astronomical fee.