Chelsea's proposed move for Atletico Madrid centre-back Miranda appears to have hit the skids. A report out of Spain this morning suggests the La Liga champions intend to keep one of their prized assets.
However, there is slightly more encouraging news regarding any move for Sami Khedira. It seems that manager Jose Mourinho hasn't abandoned hope of reuniting with one of his former players.
Here's a more in-depth breakdown of the rumours surrounding two of Mourinho's key transfer targets, starting with the situation regarding Miranda:
Miranda Will Stay in Madrid
It seems Atletico won't let their rugged Brazilian centre-back become the fourth member of last season's title-winners to join up with Chelsea this summer. That's according to Spanish newspaper Marca (h/t Daily Mail writer Hamish Mackay):
The 29-year-old Brazilian had been pushing for a move to Chelsea, where he could link up with former Atletico team-mates Diego Costa, Thibaut Courtois and Filipe Luis.
But that move now appears to be off as the Brazilian defender is certain Diego Simeone will not allow any more of his players to leave.
Simeone's reluctance is understandable after he's seen Mourinho snaffle so many of his key assets. Atleti's success last season was built on defensive solidity, and Miranda's partnership with Diego Godin was central to the stinginess at the back.
Mourinho's interest makes sense. As a powerful and uncompromising defender who is also dangerous from set pieces, Miranda fits the mold as a classic Mourinho choice.
The experienced and rugged stopper could have been the natural talisman at the back to succeed John Terry. Miranda's arrival would certainly have accelerated Terry's shift from team leader to fringe player.
Mourinho recently stated the focus will be on Terry's performances this season, per ChelseaFC.com:
The contract John got was only based on performances, not his status or his captaincy, just performances.
We think this way of [giving out] one-year contracts is a very good way of dealing with these kinds of players. John knows me and he knows the club. He just has to be worried about performing.
Those words and Terry's contract status show Chelsea remain committed to looking for future alternatives to their longtime linchpin. That explains the interest in Miranda.
Chelsea had previously been credited with a £25 million bid for the player, per Marca reporter David G. Medina. But now it seems as though the Blues will have to go on looking for talent to add to a position already featuring Branislav Ivanovic, Kurt Zouma, Gary Cahill and Terry.
Free-Transfer Swoop for Khedira a Possibility
The Special One insists Chelsea’s transfer dealings are over this summer but landing the midﬁelder on a free in 12 months’ time would represent excellent business.
It would also give the Blues more room to offer him the kind of salary he wants.
Khedira’s situation could become clearer next week when his agent meets with the top brass a Real, who will demand answers.
And there are suspicions he has already agreed to the switch because he has yet to respond to the new contract he has been offered by the Spanish giants.
Brown also referenced Arsenal's suspected strong interest in Khedira. Snatching the player away from rival boss Arsene Wenger would likely make Mourinho as happy as not having to part with a transfer fee to do so.
Those two factors would no doubt compensate for having to wait a year for Khedira's arrival. In truth, Chelsea don't currently have a pressing need for the Germany international.
In Nemanja Matic and Ramires, Mourinho already has players who combine Khedira's natural power and tremendous energy. The Chelsea gaffer is also in the process of reshuffling his midfield to get the most out of new arrival Cesc Fabregas, a player Mourinho has dubbed the "missing piece," per FourFourTwo.com.
But there's no doubt Mourinho is enamoured with what Khedira brings to a team. He oversaw the player's talents at Real Madrid and is unlikely to pass on a free transfer deal for such an influential midfielder.
Things have gone relatively quiet for Chelsea on the rumour front. That's an inevitable outcome of the excellent work the club has already done to address its biggest needs.
Any moves at this point will, in the short term at least, represent luxury signings.
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