Juan Mata's proposed move to Old Trafford continues to edge ever closer to completion, and a meeting with Manchester United manager David Moyes is the Spaniard's next priority.
Sky Sports News confirmed on Friday morning that Mata is due to complete his medical over the next 24 hours before sealing a £37 million transfer:
Juan Mata is due to have a medical in Manchester today ahead of completing his move to Old Trafford from Chelsea #ssnhd— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 24, 2014
According to the Daily Mail's Ian Ladyman, the midfielder has been put on high alert in his West London surroundings, and told to be ready "at short notice:"
He has been told to be ready to leave his apartment in Chelsea at short notice and travel to a helicopter flight base in nearby Battersea.
Once in Manchester, the Spanish playmaker is due to have a look round United's impressive training base, meet manager David Moyes and then head to the Bridgewater Hospital near the city centre for a medical.
Carrington won't be in the highest of spirits following United's Capital One Cup semi-final defeat against Sunderland on Wednesday evening.
However, Moyes now has the chance to deliver some good news for the club by ensuring his meeting with Mata does not negatively affect the proposed deal on Friday.
One person who agrees that the Chelsea playmaker's purchase will add spark to the Red Devils' campaign is ex-United stalwart Paddy Crerand, who is quoted by The Mirror's David McDonnell saying:
I think any signing, particularly a player of Mata’s quality, will lift everyone. The crowd need a lift, because they’re a bit disappointed. The crowd and everyone at the club just needs a lift right now, and maybe the signing of Mata can do that. He’s that kind of player.
Chelsea are strong in the middle of the park and have three or four world-class players there, just like United were a few years ago. But when Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie are back, that will also make a big difference to United, because they’re two top players.
Moyes' squad has drawn criticism this season for lacking in star quality, despite being largely the same roster that ran to the Premier League title last term.
However, one would find it difficult to deny the promise that's held by an attacking line-up of Mata, Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie, which is assuredly of silverware standard.
Mata's appointment with Moyes isn't likely to be much more than a formality for the club, and it's been reported by The Telegraph's Mark Ogden that the Blues have merely to sign off on the deal:
Mata now all set for move to #mufc. Only hold-up is at Chelsea end, with agreement yet to be signed off. They have their foot on the ball..— Mark Ogden (@MOgdenTelegraph) January 23, 2014
With Moyes' men currently seventh in the table and 14 points off top spot, the morale boost couldn't have come at a better time.
Just how high United can afford to set their sights with Mata's impending purchase is up for debate. One would have to think that any title chase has, effectively, been over since the 3-1 loss to Chelsea last weekend.
Having said that, the English giants are building a new chapter under Moyes, and Mata will be a huge coup for the manager, who hopes the Spaniard will make his debut in next Tuesday's fixture against Cardiff City.