According to reports, Jose Mourinho is set to make a shock move to land former player Mikel John Obi in January from Chelsea.
Mikel, 29, has not played under new Stamford Bridge manager Antonio Conte and there are no plans to renew his contract which runs out this season. The defensive midfielder will be available on a cut-price deal to get him off the books.
Mikel has been at Chelsea for almost a decade now and has played in total 372 appearances for the club. In his total 11 seasons at the club, Mikel has won the Premier League twice, the FA Cup four times, the League Cup and the Europa League.
Mourinho reportedly considers that Mikel is the perfect anchorman in order to get the best out of record signing Paul Pogba. It’s also reported that any deal for Mikel would be worth just £2 million.
Jose Mourinho is desperately in search of a defensive midfielder who could come in and replace Michael Carrick in the centre of the field. And having trained the Nigerian before, Mourinho would attain him as an easy option given his adjustability and his experience to break down build-up plays with efficiency.
Marseille have also been linked with Mikel, but if Chelsea allow the player to move to Manchester United, the Nigerian is likely to choose a reconciliation with Mourinho over a move to the French side.
Mikel had just turned 19 when the Old Trafford outfit announced on their website that they had signed the teenager on a four-year contract from Norwegian club Lyn Oslo, he was even pictured in a United shirt. But he eventually moved to Chelsea after the Blues compensated the Red Devils with £12 million and claimed that he had been pressured into signing for Manchester United.
However, the Portuguese manager still has options in defensive midfield in Ander Herrera, Morgan Schneiderlin, Marouane Fellaini and even Bastian Schweinsteiger but it would seem he’s not convinced with any of those players and is keen to sign someone new.
Photo by Aleksandr Osipov