Chelsea brace themselves for Man Utd to kick-off Willian bidding war with Barcelona



Posted Saturday, June 30, 2018 by Express.co.uk

Chelsea brace themselves for Man Utd to kick-off Willian bidding war with Barcelona
Chelsea are bracing themselves for a mega Manchester United bid for Willian

CHELSEA are bracing themselves for a mega Manchester United bid after turning down Barcelona's £50m Willian approach.

The Stamford Bridge club expect Manchester United to make their move for the Brazil international, with Old Trafford chief Jose Mourinho intent on recruiting Willian this summer, and set to start a bidding war.

Mourinho is a major fan of Willian, who was one of the few Chelsea players to perform for him as his second spell at Stamford Bridge unravelled in 2015.

Barcelona have though moved first for the Brazilian with a substantial bid, as they look for reinforcements following the departure of Nou Camp legend Andres Iniesta.

Willian, who has been at Stamford Bridge for five years, turns 30 in August and Chelsea could be tempted to cash in if Barca's offer is substantially increased.

The former Anzhi star impressed in Chelsea's Champions League knockout stage clash with Barca, scoring in the 1-1 home draw before the West Londoners crashed out 4-1 on aggregate.

As with several other Chelsea players though, Willian's future at Stamford Bridge could well depend on the intentions of incoming manager Maurizio Sarri.

The Brazilian was never a favourite of outgoing boss Antonio Conte, who dropped him for last season's FA Cup final win over United.

But Conte is poised to be axed over the next few days to make way for former Napoli manager Sarri.

Willian, currently in Russia with Brazil, for whom he has started all three matches, has made no overtures to move from Chelsea, but with the club missing out on Champions League football next season, a switch to the Nou Camp could be tempting, as could a link up again with Mourinho.

Chelsea though would be reluctant to sell to a Premier League rival, which could leave the way open for Barcelona.

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