WILLIAN is thrilled by the prospect of playing under Jose Mourinho after the final loose end in his £32 million transfer to Chelsea was yesterday tied up.
The 25-year-old playmaker, capped twice by Brazil, has been granted a work permit to complete his move from Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala after agreeing a five-year contract with the Stamford Bridge outfit.
“I’m very happy to be here, it’s been a dream of mine to come and play here,” Willian said on the club’s website. “Chelsea are one of the best clubs in the world and now I’m going to play for one of the best managers in the world. I’m very happy and looking forward to it.”
Willian, who will wear the No22 shirt, looked set to join Tottenham last week only for Chelsea to hijack the deal and outbid their Barclays Premier League rivals. He had passed a medical at Spurs before Mourinho swooped to add him to Chelsea’s attacking options.
Persistently linked with a move to England, he spent six years at Shakhtar Donetsk where he made his name as a creative midfield player before joining Anzhi in January. He began his career in his homeland with Corinthians before moving to Europe with Donetsk in 2007. He made more than 100 appearances for the Ukrainians.
Tomorrow night’s Super Cup match against Bayern Munich in Prague has arrived too soon for his debut, so he must wait until the Premier League showdown with Everton on 14 September. His arrival has fuelled speculation Spaniard Juan Mata could be on his way out, with Arsenal a possible destination.
Anzhi owner Suleiman Kerimov has reportedly put his entire first team up for sale, having sacked coach Rene Meulensteen.
Willian joins Germany forward Andre Schurrle, Dutch midfielder Marco van Ginkel and Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer as recent arrivals at Stamford Bridge.