Arsene Wenger: Juan Mata transfer from Chelsea to Manchester United is 'unfair', complains Arsenal manager
The manager has questioned the timing of the transfer
Thursday 23 January 2014
Arsene Wenger has argued that Juan Mata's upcoming move from Chelsea to Manchester United is unfair, claiming that Chelsea are happier to strengthen a team who they have already played twice in the league this season, making United tougher opponents for the rest of the Blues' title rivals.
"Yes I am [suprised] because Juan Mata is a great player, and they are selling a great player to a direct opponent," the Arsenal manager said in his press briefing ahead of the Gunners' FA Cup tie against Coventry City on Friday.
"It opens up the opportunities in this transfer market because Chelsea have already played twice against Man United and so don't play them again anymore," Wenger added. United lost 3-1 at Chelsea last weekend, while the teams drew 0-0 at Old Trafford back in August. Chelsea could still come up against United in the Champions League but Mata would be ineligible.
"United could have sold him last week but it opens at least the dates of this transfer window. Some teams have already played twice against one opponent and some others not and I think if you want to respect the fairness for everybody - exactly the same - that should not happen."
Asked whether it was purely a tactical move, Wenger replied: "I wouldn't go as far as that, I just think you would want that everybody is at the same level. I can understand completely what Chelsea are doing, it's within the rules but maybe the rules should be adapted for fairness."
Juan Mata is expected to have a medical at United today
Wenger had admitted in August that he would have liked to have signed the Spanish midfielder in the summer window, but at the time spoke of English clubs "reluctance" to sell to each other.
Including Mata, here are the biggest deals yet to happen in this transfer window
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