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Manchester United title bid strengthened by Nemanja Matic signing, says Phil Neville

12 August, 2017, 22:46 | Author: Joan Malone
  • Man Utd paid Chelsea £40m to sign Nemanja Matic

Antonio Conte admitted on Wednesday that the departure of Matic was a "great loss" to Chelsea, who will also begin their Premier League title defence without £40 million signing Bakayoko due to a knee injury picked up in the final weeks of last season at Monaco.

"I think he played really well", Mourinho said of the 29-year-old defensive midfielder, who he coached at Chelsea.

Pogba scored just the nine times in all competitions last season, only five of which were in the league, as United limped to a sixth-place finish.

"United were crying out for a central midfielder with the qualities of Nemanja Matic".

"Whether Conte knows something different to us, I don't know", he said. You've got to understand what the club is all about.

Chelsea have strengthened too, but not as much as they would have liked given the added demands of Champions League football - but Giggs thinks they will still be in the mix.

"It amazes me, why would you sell Matic to Manchester United?".

Frank Lampard
GETTY Frank Lampard believes Matic was the one who pushed through a move to Man Utd

"It takes time, I know that from experience of going to United at a young age". The Champions League is obviously more hard.

"He seemed like he wanted to leave a year ago at times, although he was very influential and played very well", he said of Costa.

On the prospect of re-signing Ibrahimovic once the 35-year-old striker has recovered, Mourinho said: "We are having conversations and discussing the possibility of him staying for the second part of the season".

"I think in the moments where they were moving more the ball, of course it was hard for us in the midfield".

"I came from a similar position when I went from Aston Villa to United and people will always cast doubt over whether you have the quality, but this guy has got it all".

Almost 12 months on from his then world record transfer from Juventus, Pogba has emerged as a leader within Mourinho's squad and will certainly be looking to push on this season. He's available, can we get him?' I think Chelsea more often than not have backed their managers and brought in the players needed.

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