Chelsea, having missed out a ‘top four’ finish in Premier League, had a difficult summer window with multiple rejections from preferred options and also fighting hard to keep hold of prized resources amid interest from fellow European heavyweights with Champions League football to offer. But Willian, heavily linked to a move to league counterparts Manchester United, is likely to stay put as told by new Blues boss Maurizio Sarri in a recent interview.
The Brazilian, soon to be 30, was being chased by Barcelona a few days back. Their several bids were rejected and the Catalans later opted to hijack AS Roma’s deal to sign Malcom from Bordeaux as his alternative. Willian enjoyed a couple of blistering games down the right wing for Brazil in the World Cup campaign and flourished significantly in Premier League circuit under Jose Mourinho since his £30m move from Anzhi Makhachkala back in summer 2013. The Portuguese tactician, now in charge of Manchester United, wants a reunion but Sarri’s ‘positive conversation’ with the attacker has relieved the supporters after weeks of anxiety.
Willian was supposed to join the team on Friday before Sunday’s Community Shield tie against Manchester United, but his absence fueled speculations which, however, were cooled down by the gaffer immediately stating:
“I spoke yesterday with him about him being late, not his future. It was a very positive conversation and I am very happy about it. There is no Willian problem.”
The Red Devils are well equipped in attack but need someone alongside Marcus Rashford to operate down the right flank. Chelsea, having failed to add anyone yet except Jorginho in midfield and veteran custodian Robert Green as a squad option, are in genuine need to keep hold of the dynamic Selecao superstar. Pedro had an underwhelming season whereas Victor Moses is more suited as a wingback option these days over an outright wide attacker.
With only a few days remaining in the window before 9th August’s deadline, Chelsea will have a massive lift even if they fail to add any more options upfront as in-demand Willian is set to play a major role next season at Stamford Bridge.