Chelsea beat Tottenham to £30m Willian, subject to work permit
Chelsea have agreed a deal to sign Brazilian playmaker Willian for £30m, subject to the player being given a work permit and passing a medical.
The 25-year-old has already passed a medical at Spurs, but the Blues have swooped to pip their London rivals to the signing.
The BBC reports that Chelsea made their move at 6pm on Thursday, long after Willian had completed his Spurs medical. But a combination of the offer of Champions League football and an intervention by Roman Abramovich swung the deal in Chelsea’s favour.
Abramomich reportedly contacted fellow Russian oligarch Suleyman Kerimov, owner of Willian’s current club Anzhi, to smooth over the transfer.
The player had agreed personal terms within 24 hours of Chelsea’s initial approach.
The Daily Mirror reports that Spurs see the deal as a tactical move and that Chelsea don’t really need Willian but don’t want their title rivals to have him.
However, sources close to the deal told the BBC that the Blues have enquired about the former Shakhtar Donetsk man’s availability in every transfer window since 2011.
If you’ve felt the whole thing has been needlessly complicated, please refer to the photo above of Willian posing with Kia Joorabchian. The Brazil international captioned the picture, which was taken three days ago: “Dinner with the best agents in the world!”