x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Didier Drogba means business for Chelsea.

Chelsea Coach Jose Mourinho. EPA
Chelsea Coach Jose Mourinho. EPA


Louis van Gaal looks set to speak to Jose Mourinho over his claim that signing Luke Shaw would have “killed” Chelsea.

Shaw became the fourth-most expensive defender in history this summer when he signed for Manchester United for an initial fee of £27million (Dh 168m).

Chelsea, who Shaw supported as a youngster, were interested in him, but Mourinho revealed he pulled out of a bid to sign the player due to his wage demands.

The Chelsea manager claimed Shaw’s reported wages of around £100,000 a week were way too large for a player who only made his Premier League debut in November 2012.

“If we pay to a 19-year-old boy what we were being asked for, to sign Luke Shaw, we are dead,” Mourinho was quoted as saying in several national newspapers.

“We would have killed our stability with financial fair play and killed the stability in our dressing room, because when you pay that much to a 19-year-old kid - a good player, fantastic player - but when you pay that amount of money, the next day, we would have had players knocking on our door.

“They would have been saying, ‘How is it possible I play 200 games for this club, won this and that, yet a 19-year-old comes here and gets more money than I get?’”

Van Gaal refused to get drawn into a public war of words with Mourinho - a former protege of his at Barcelona - but it appears he will discuss the matter privately with the Portuguese.

“I don’t think I have to discuss things in the media, it’s better to discuss it with Jose,” he said.


Nice coach Claude Puel has announced goalkeeper David Ospina has completed his move to Arsenal.

Reports have linked the Gunners with a move for the 25 year old since his impressive World Cup displays with Colombia.

And speaking to Sky Sports News after Nice’s friendly defeat to Brentford, Puel claimed ignorance of the fee involved but said: “It’s confirmed, yes. It’s a good affair for Arsenal because he’s a very good player.

“You will see next season the quality of this player.”


QPR have recalled Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar from his loan at Toronto FC, the MLS side have announced.

The 34-year-old, who played in all seven of Brazil’s matches at this summer’s World Cup, joined Toronto in February and made seven appearances for the Canadian outfit.

A statement on www.torontofc.ca read: “Toronto FC announced Friday that Brazilian international goalkeeper Julio Cesar has returned to English Premier League club, Queens Park Rangers thus ending his loan with Toronto FC and Major League Soccer.”


Mourinho and Didier Drogba have warned the Premier League the striker’s Chelsea return is not a sentimental move.

The Blues favourite returned to Stamford Bridge on Friday on a one-year deal after leaving in 2012 for stints at Shanghai Shenhua and Galatasaray.

He may be 36 but Drogba insists he is coming back to contribute to the club’s trophy ambitions - a sentiment echoed by manager Mourinho.

“Didier’s coming because he’s one of the best strikers in Europe,” said Mourinho, himself in his second spell with the club, who originally signed the Ivory Coast international for £24million in 2004.

“I know his personality very well and I know if he comes back he’s not protected by history or what he’s done for this club previously.

“He is coming with the mentality to make more history.”

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