Jose Mourinho says that "nothing has changed" in Chelsea’s pursuit of Wayne Rooney, but that the club have a “plan B and C" if Manchester United remain steadfast in their refusal to sell.
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The Portuguese coach has pursued Rooney all summer and openly talked about the prospect of the transfer, but was a little less willing to discuss other potential targets.
Chelsea sources have informed ESPN that the club are interested in Samuel Eto’o -- despite the fact no formal contact has yet been made -- and Galatasaray’s Buruk Yilmaz.
It is understood that there is an increasing acceptance at Stamford Bridge that United will not sell Rooney, but Mourinho admitted they are still interested.
“Nothing changed,” the coach said, as he was then asked why the club keep chasing a player despite two previous bids being rejected.
“It is the same reason why other clubs do the same with our players. When you think that you’d like to have one player and the market is open and the official bids are not forbidden, official bids are always accepted in an ethical way, you try because nobody forbids you to try. Of course the players’ owners can do exactly what we did with David Luiz and Barcelona. It’s simple."
When questioned on whether he has a "plan B", Mourinho quickly stated "and C". Those are understood to be Eto’o and Yilmaz.
He said: "We trust a lot in our project. But we have conditions to try and improve our team with one more player and we will try until the end."
The Chelsea manager also said he agreed with Newcastle boss Alan Pardew’s comments that the transfer window is open for too long.
He added: "At a certain point I agree with what Pardew was saying yesterday, that the transfer window goes too far, into the third and fourth fixture of the season. I agree that it’s too much but it gives everybody a chance to be in the market while we are still winning or losing points."