Tottenham transfers: No way Chelsea would sell Mata to us – AVB
Tottenham transfers: Andre Villas-Boas says there is no chance that Chelsea would consider selling Juan Mata to Spurs
Andre Villas-Boas believes there is no chance Chelsea would consider selling Juan Mata to Tottenham – because the Blues consider Spurs to be one of their title rivals.
Uncertainty has surrounded the 25-year-old’s future at Chelsea in recent weeks, speculation that heightened on Monday night when Mata was left out of the starting line-up to face Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Arsenal and Manchester United have both been linked with the Spain international, while Spurs have also been credited with an interest in signing the playmaker.
However, Spurs boss Villas-Boas is adamant that his former employers would never consider selling one of their prized assets to a side capable of fighting for the Premier League title.
“First, Chelsea wouldn’t sell to Tottenham in any way or form, as they think that we are title contenders,” said Villas-Boas.
“Mata is a great, great player – player of the season last season – very, very important player for Chelsea.
“They’re just not going to strengthen another team that, in their opinion, are rivals for the title.”
Villas-Boas was also inevitably pressed on the relentless speculation surrounding Gareth Bale’s future and the Wales international’s expected transfer to Real Madrid.
The 24-year-old, who is understood to be on the verge of a world-record £86m move to Madrid, has failed to turn up to training despite being expected to return to Spurs’ training base on Tuesday.
And the Portuguese coach said that Bale could be fined by the club for failing to report back after he reportedly spent the weekend in Spain.
“I gave the player the weekend off, Monday was a day off for the squad,” said Villas-Boas.
“Obviously he is involved in a big transfer move to Real Madrid. In the end if it happens we wish him all the best.
“He will leave us here with great memories. The fact that he hasn’t turned up, I don’t know if it is the correct behaviour, in the end it is pressure and a statement from the player.
“Now it is up to the club to decide if it is a fineable offence.”
Villas-Boas, whose Spurs side travel to north London rivals Arsenal on Sunday afternoon, continued: “It is a dream move for him but I think in the end this could have happened in a different way.
“At the moment, the two clubs are speaking. I suppose it could go to the last day or it could happen in next two days. But you wouldn’t expect the biggest transfer in world football to happen easily.”