Chelsea transfer news: Jose Mourinho claims it took one minute to persuade Pedro to sign for Chelsea

The Spain international was close to joining Manchester United

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The Independent Online

It has been one of the longest to resolve of all the summer’s transfers but Jose Mourinho claimed that a perfunctory one-minute conversation on the phone with Pedro was all it took to persuade the Spain winger to leave Barcelona and join Chelsea.

With Manchester United’s interest clearly stated, Mourinho made the final move to tie up a £22.1m deal that Chelsea have worked on for much of the year.

“It was a one-minute conversation,” Mourinho said. “[I asked] ‘Is it true that you want to leave Barcelona?’ [Pedro:] ‘Yes, it’s true. I love it here. It’s my home, but it’s time for me to move.’ [Mourinho:] ‘Did you sign already for another club?’ [Pedro] ‘Almost, but not yet.’ [Mourinho] ‘Do you want to come here?’ [Pedro] ‘Yes, I want.’

“For me, it was one minute. I told my people in the club, responsible for the practical side of the market, that he hadn’t signed for another club. Almost, but not yet. He told me he wants to come here, so it’s over to you. I thought he’d never leave Barcelona.”

 

At Cobham on Friday, Mourinho presented the Pedro deal as one in which the greatest barrier to signing the player had been persuading him to part company with Barcelona – “the club of his dreams, the club of his heart” – rather than any interest from United.

Asked whether Chelsea were now a bigger draw for leading players than United, Mourinho deferred to the footballers themselves rather than answer.

Even so, after a difficult start to the season, and just a single point from their first two Premier League games, Mourinho said that the squad had been reinvigorated by the arrivals of Pedro and Baba Rahman ahead of tomorrow’s game against West Bromwich Albion. He did not rule out the arrival of John Stones from Everton, or another major deal. “It depends on the opportunities, whether you can do something you really believe you cannot pass up,” he said. “Let’s see what can happen.”

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Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho

Nevertheless, he conceded that neither he nor his players had competed at the requisite level in their first two games.

“I’m not happy with my form,” Mourinho said. “Because I used to get better results than I’m getting now. This is the start of everything.

“I’m not happy with [Branislav] Ivanovic’s form, I’m not happy with [Gary] Cahill’s form, I’m not happy with John [Terry’s] form, I’m not happy with [Cesar] Azpi’s form, I’m not happy with Eden [Hazard’s] form, I’m not happy with [Cesc] Fabregas’s form, I’m not happy with [Nemanja] Matic’s form.

“But for me, the start of everything is I’m not happy with my form. What we are trying to do this week? Work better; spend more time thinking about it; watching more videos; trying to find better training exercise; being more active in training; looking for the feedback. Even myself I go to the gym every day now to get fitter. Maybe I need more action on the touchline, so I need to be fitter. I promise you!”

“Not one is happy. We have one point from two matches. I’m not happy at all. I’m not happy with anyone. I’m either happy with everybody or I’m not happy with anyone, and at this moment I’m not happy.”

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