Friday 20 July 2018

Chelsea steal march on Manchester United as Pedro lands in London ahead of medical

Pedro kisses the UEFA Cup trophy as Barcelona celebrate victory
Pedro kisses the UEFA Cup trophy as Barcelona celebrate victory
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Chelsea appear to have beaten Manchester United in the race to sign Barcelona forward Pedro, after the Spanish international flew into London for a medical ahead of a £22m move to Stamford Bridge.

Barcelona forward Pedro had confirmed that he will end speculation over his future by the end of this week and Chelsea have acted quickly to seal a deal, after United spent the last few weeks pausing over a move for the Spanish forward.

United have been in talks with Barcelona over a deal for Pedro in recent days, yet Chelsea appear to have capitalised on their failure to close out a deal by snapping up the 28-year-old attacking star.

The news represents a hammer blow to United boss Louis van Gaal and will again put the negotiating skills of Old Trafford executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward into the spotlight after another summer of aborted transfer bids.

Read more: Chelsea make late attempt to snatch £22m Pedro from United and prepare fourth John Stones bid

United are now claiming they have 'decided' not to sign Pedro, in a similar scenario that followed their failed bid to sign Toni Kroos from Bayern Munich last summer.

In truth, Kroos decided to join Real Madrid and now it seems as if another of their big transfer target has also turned down a move to Old Trafford.

Woodward’s credibility as a transfer negotiator will now come under severe scrutiny once again, as the American is enduring a third successive summer of transfer calamities that has seen him fail in bids to sign Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels, Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale and Bayern Munich striker Thomas Muller.

Read more: Why Pedro will be an excellent signing for Manchester United (and why he might not)

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