Spain midfielder Juan Mata has said he has yet to speak to new Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho but that he would be surprised if he was deemed surplus to requirements at Stamford Bridge.
Reports emerged earlier in the summer that Mourinho had relayed to clubs on the continent that Mata would be available for transfer from the Europa League winners but speaking from the Spain base at the Confederations Cup the player said he had the assurances of the club officials that he was wanted though he has yet to speak with the manager.
“The last time I spoke with the club they told me I was a very important player to them and transmitted confidence in me,” he said. “I’m sure Mourinho will want to see everyone first and then decide what he wants to do.”
As when questioned a fortnight ago about his thoughts on Mourinho, Mata was cagey in response to a question about how he thinks the new boss would welcome him.
“You have to know people first before you can evaluate them. After the holidays and after I’ve rested I’ll meet the new boss and I’m sure things will go well.”
The attacking midfielder who was voted the club’s player of the season last year has been linked with a return to the Bernabeu where he came through the youth system before departing for Valenica aged 19 but said he had no plans to return to Madrid in the near future.
“I only have good words for Real Madrid. I was there for four years and they brought me up, both as a player and a person.
“I have many friends there and I’m very grateful to the club. But I’ve spent two great years in London and the only thing I’m thinking about now is continuing to enjoy this league and this city that I love.”
Mourinho yesterday made his first signing of his second reign at Chelsea by securing the signature of Bayer Leverkusen forward Andre Schurrle and the German international said he was looking forward to working under the Portuguese manager.
“I’m really looking forward to working with him”, he told the club website.
“He’s a very good person with a big personality; he’s a great manager so it’s an absolute honour for me to now be one of his players.”