Jose Mourinho admits he still can’t believe Chelsea’s generosity in selling Nemanja Matic to Manchester United.
The midfield powerhouse had been a central figure in a Chelsea unit which has won the Premier League title in two of the last three seasons.
Mourinho pinpointed a player of Matic’s style as a key summer transfer requirement but never envisaged he would be able to prise him from Stamford Bridge.
Antonio Conte has openly questioned the sale of the 28-year-old and labelled his departure a gross loss and Mourinho believes Matic could well prove the missing piece in his United jigsaw.
‘When I joined Manchester United last year I thought immediately that we needed a kind of Matic but there are not many. There are just a couple, not many,’ he said.
Nemanja Matic’s 2016/17 Premier League stats
‘But I was not thinking of it [buying him] because I always thought I never like to go to players that I think are the impossible mission and I felt there was no chance.
‘When I got the call that Matic wants to play for me and wants to play for Manchester United this season and we can make it happen, I thought it’s the perfect player for me.
‘Not just for his qualities, also for my relationship with him, the way I know him, the way he knows me.
‘He’s one of those players with no question marks in front. He doesn’t need time to adapt to England.
‘He’s not a young guy who comes from another country. He doesn’t need time to learn the Premier League.
‘He’s a player of 29 and has five years in the Premier League. He has lots of experience.
‘He’s one of those players that gives me what I like in players which is consistency. It is the way I trust the player is going to perform. Matic is Matic. So I think he was a fantastic signing for us.’