Former Chelsea defender Mario Melchiot has tipped Nemanja Matic to come back and haunt his former side if he does join Manchester United.
The Guardian reported on Monday that Matic, signed by Mourinho during his time as Chelsea boss back in 2014, would move to Old Trafford after a £40m fee was agreed between the two clubs.
Antonio Conte will allow the Serb to leave for that price after securing the services of AS Monaco’s Tiemoue Bakayoko for a reported £35m.
But Melchiot, despite his former side signing the Frenchman, believes that selling a player of Matic’s quality to a rival could come back to haunt them.
“He was very crucial in some games Chelsea played last season and I think he did extremely well, even if he wasn’t starting every game,” he said.
“There was a good balance in the midfield, sometimes with him or Fabregas next to Kante.
“You don’t want to make your rivals stronger, especially in the midfield where Jose Mourinho is always focused on having a strong midfield.
“If he [Conte] makes the choice to let him go to Man United, he better have good backing because, if not, it might come back and bite you later.”
Conte has not just sold one of his midfield lynchpins to a close rival; he has sent him to work under the man who oversaw his transition into one of the Premier League’s most hardened midfielders.
At the age of 28, Matic is not, like Alvaro Morata or Paul Pogba, a long term investment, but instead a player firmly in his prime, fresh from another Premier League title and in need of no time to adapt to his new clubs