Manchester United and Chelsea could miss out on highly rated Athletic Bilbao midfielder Ander Herrera this summer.
The 24-year-old midfielder was heavily linked with a move to Manchester United last summer and the saga dragged on till the transfer deadline day, where Bilbao rejected a €30m offer for the Spaniard, who has a €36m release clause on his contract.
United are thought to be considering making an effort to sign Herrara again, but his agent Arturo Canales says he was unaware of any interest from Premier League clubs.
He says his client is happy at Bilbao and is focussed on the season ahead. Furthermore, he claims that there has also been an interest from Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, but so far, they haven’t received any official bid for him.
“There has been nothing new,” Canales said to Spanish newspaper AS. “There were rumours during the whole year, saying that United would try and sign him this summer, and even that [Jose] Mourinho wanted him for Chelsea, but we have not heard anything.”
“The player is focused on Athletic and nothing else,” he added. “Ander is on holidays and he is only thinking about the coming season with Athletic, because he is very excited about playing the Champions League with his team.”
The situation has changed at Old Trafford following the arrival of Dutch manager Louis van Gaal. The new manager will be looking to stamp his own authority in the squad and should sign players whom he prefers. Herrera was a target of previous manager David Moyes and quite understandably the interest for him had died down the moment Moyes left the club.
Chelsea have already signed Cesc Fabregas from Barcelona but the Blues may sign another midfielder, should they sell John Obi Mikel in the summer.