Manchester United's capture of Juan Mata has their rivals worried.
He is a fantastic player.
We are not afraid of him doing well at Man United, we want him to be happy and do well at Man United.
He was fantastic for Chelsea, and Chelsea were fantastic for him. When he comes back to Stamford Bridge with a Man United shirt on, for sure we will show how much we respect him.
As the Blues bid him farewell, the transfer has thrown up some interesting reactions in certain quarters.
Could it be that David Moyes’ capture of the talented Spaniard has United’s rivals worried?
It certainly seems that way.
Rob Dawson of the Manchester Evening News noted via his Twitter feed that Pellegrini "disagreed" with the move:
Pellegrini on Mata deal: "I don’t agree that a player can go from one team to another in the same league In January but rules are rules."— Rob Dawson (@RobDawsonMEN) January 24, 2014
Taken in context, it’s a ridiculous statement for the Chilean to make.
After making a lot of friends in a short period of time, via his personable demeanour and his team's vibrant brand of attacking football, such a remark shows another, unwelcome side to his character.
Wenger let his mask slip once again and went even further, suggesting the move lacked "fairness" (per Sky Sports):
I am surprised. Juan Mata is a great player and they sell a great player to a direct opponent.
Chelsea have already played twice against Man United, they could have sold him last week.
I think if you want to respect the fairness for everybody, this should not happen.
I can understand completely what Chelsea are doing, and they do not make the rules, but maybe the rules should be a bit more adapted for fairness.
It was a childish reaction to the transfer and one which, predictably, irked Mourinho. At his weekly press conference, the Portuguese retorted (per London Evening Standard):
Wenger complaining is normal because he always does. It's something that we know.
We don't do the market, we don't do the rules. We have just to do according to the rules.
I'm not concerned with other things. So, normally, he should be very happy that Chelsea sold a player like Juan Mata. But I think it's also a bit of his nature. We have to accept the way he is.
But when he says that this is not fair, I think what is not fair is that his team always has the best days to play. Always. Always.
What’s not in doubt is the lift that Mata’s signature will give United.
It’s entirely possible that it will have the same galvanizing effect as Mesut Ozil’s deadline-day capture for the Gunners.
Perhaps it’s the renewed focus and energy such a transfer will bring to David Moyes’ side which has brought a little bit of jealousy bubbling to the surface.
That won’t bother anyone at Old Trafford and ex-United defender Garry Pallister told of his delight at the capture (per Sky Sports):
He is a fantastic signing. A lot of people can't quite understand why he has not been in Jose Mourinho's team after being player of the year for the last two seasons.
He is the kind of player Manchester United fans want to see. He has great imagination and can get people off their seats in anticipation of the things he can do with a football.
We are delighted to get hold of him. Hopefully he can help lift Manchester United out of the spell they are going through.
With a week remaining of the window, there’s still time for other signings to be made.
As long as they don’t upset Wenger or Pellegrini, of course.