I completed Chelsea transfer after call from 'agent' Fernando Torres convinced me to sign

Juan Mata watches on during the UEFA Women's Euro 2022 Semi Final match between England and Sweden
Juan Mata watches on during the UEFA Women's Euro 2022 Semi Final match between England and Sweden -Credit:2022 The FA

Former Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata has admitted Fernando Torres took on the role of an "agent" to convince him to sign for the club over a decade ago.

The Blues agreed a deal worth £23.5million with Valencia to recruit Mata during the summer transfer window of 2011, having already welcomed Torres to the club months earlier in January.

Mata was a player in demand at the time and had been linked with the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool before choosing Stamford Bridge as his next destination.

Key to this decision was the input of fellow Spaniard, Torres, who sold the vision of the pair playing in the capital together as teammates. Both individuals were no strangers at this stage, having been in the Spain squad that won the 2010 World Cup.

Opening up on his transfer to Chelsea and the role played by Torres, Mata revealed: "He called me during a pre-season I was doing in Asia and said 'I know they want you, the coach has spoken to me, you're going to be very good, we need a player like you, you're going to play, you're going to make a difference'.

"He acted as an agent! I had a lot of affection and respect for him, so I let him advise me. He and his family helped me a lot in London. We have a great relationship.

"Everyone knows what Chelsea means in the modern era: great players. After four years at Valencia, I wanted a change of culture, country and language, and the club needed to find a way out of their financial problems. It was a deal that suited all parties."

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Mata remained at the club until January 2014, at which point he signed for Manchester United having been frozen out of the Chelsea squad by Jose Mourinho for no apparent reason. Explaining if he truly wanted to make this move, the now 36-year-old told FourFourTwo: "Yes, because I saw I didn't have and wasn't going to get the minutes that I was sure I would have in Manchester.

"When a club like Manchester United comes knocking, it's difficult to say no. Old Trafford was different. It has a great history, and the feeling of belonging to that club is a beautiful thing. There are few chosen clubs but Manchester United are one of them."

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