Chelsea’s Nigerian midfielder John Obi Mikel
It is difficult to believe, but reports in London say that former Chelsea Manager, Jose Mourinho, wants a reunion at Manchester United with Super Eagles’ Skipper, John Obi Mikel.
Mikel joined Chelsea when Mourinho was just coming into the team, but the former Plateau United star did not feature much for the Stamford Bridge side during the first and second spells of the ‘Special One.’
In fact, Mikel hardly figured in Chelsea’s squads during the last days of Mourinho in London, but the midfielder became prominent in the line up when Guus Hiddink took over the club.
Such was Mikel’s happiness at Mourinho’s departure that he openly spoke of his relief that the Portuguese was sacked. And now reports say Mourinho wants to buy Mikel during the January transfer window.
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.
According to www.sun.co.uk, the Manchester United boss is ready to take advantage of Mikel’s situation in Chelsea with a cut-price New Year offer for the player the Red Devils thought they had signed 10 years ago.
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.
The £4 million transfer was done directly with the player and his club — bypassing his agents and he was even pictured in a United shirt. But Chelsea angrily claimed they had an agreement with the agents to buy him.
Things turned nasty when it was reported Obi started to get threatening phone calls and ended up having to take refuge in a safe hotel with a security guard.
He then went missing from Lyn amid stories he had been kidnapped.
The Nigerian midfielder had actually travelled to London where he went on Sky Sports TV to claim that he had been pressured into signing for United, something they denied, and he wanted to join the Blues.
The matter was resolved when Chelsea paid United £12 million and Lyn £4 million.