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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 September 2018

Manchester United close to agreeing deal for Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic

Serbia international is set to reunite with Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford, according to media reports.

Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic has won two Premier League titles, the FA Cup and League Cup during his second spell at Chelsea. Ian Kington / AFP
Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic has won two Premier League titles, the FA Cup and League Cup during his second spell at Chelsea. Ian Kington / AFP

Manchester United are closing in on a deal for Chelsea's Serbian midfielder Nemanja Matic, according to Sky Sports.

Matic, 28, has been a transfer target for United manager Jose Mourinho for much of the summer as the Portugese looks to add to his midfield options. Matic, who first moved to Chelsea in 2009 but struggled to break into the first team, was re-signed by Mourinho in 2014 during his second spell in charge at Stamford Bridge.

The Serbia international was a crucial part of the team that delivered Mourinho his third Premier League title in 2015, and he was again ever-present under Antonio Conte last season as Chelsea reclaimed the title.

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However, the arrival of Tiemoue Bakayoko from Monaco this summer means Matic is no longer a guaranteed starter and he has been told by Conte that he can find a new club.

Serie A champions Juventus were also reported to be interested in Matic, but have since turned their focus elsewhere, with Paris Saint-Germain's Blaise Matuidi and Sevilla midfielder Steven N'Zonzi both rumoured targets.

United were always expected to be the frontrunners for Matic's signature, although media reports had claimed that Chelsea would resist their advances having missed out on Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku to their rivals.

A fee for Matic has not been reported, although it was claimed earlier in the summer that Chelsea had rejected a £35 million (Dh168.8m) bid from United, with the Premier League champions valuing their player at £45m.

As well as the two Premier League titles, Matic won the FA Cup and League Cup during his second spell at Chelsea.

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