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United-Chelsea draw sees transfer speculation mount

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If all the speculation pre-match surrounded Chelsea's pursuit of Wayne Rooney, the managers' interviews after the match shed interesting new light on the deals that are likely to dominate the coming days. 

Manchester United and Chelsea played out a goal-less draw at Old Trafford that left much to be desired; in many ways a victim of its own hype. 

But those who thought that Rooney, restored to the starting line-up for United, would take all the headlines got more than they bargained for.

David Moyes and Jose Mourinho's post-match interviews were perhaps more exciting than the match itself, while their comments regarding three big-name stars are certain to have more of an impact than the draw played out before them.

Firstly, and perhaps most notably, Mourinho, who in the build-up to the match claimed that he did not want to discuss Rooney, appeared to offer the striker a forceful demand for pushing for a transfer. 

Claiming that Chelsea "didn't start the story", he went on to suggest that Rooney must force the move, by declaring his interest in a move. 

United insisted in the build-up that Rooney would not be sold and during the match he received vociferous support from United fans throughout the match. However if he were to come out and declare that he wants to leave Manchester, it is hard to imagine Moyes holding onto him with the blessing of fans.

Much speculation had surrounded Juan Mata, with the playmaker linked to a number of sides over the weekend and in Monday's build-up. This intensified when the Spaniard was left out of Chelsea's starting line-up.

Mourinho, in a statement that echoed the club's stance earlier in the transfer window, claimed that Mata was going nowhere, calling the stories "nonsense". 

If it felt that Mourinho was stealing the show with his comments, Moyes then teased United fans with speculation that will have Premier League rivals fretting.

It emerged on Monday that Tottenham had received a bid for Gareth Bale from another club, widely assumed to be United, to rival the two made by Real Madrid. When prompted to discuss this link, Moyes was coy, doing little to douse speculation that it was his side who had made the bid. 

If the match itself did little to excite fans, it did offer some logic to the rumours that Moyes and Mourinho added to post-match.

Chelsea's starting line-up, devoid of an outright striker, betrayed Mourinho's lack of faith in his current forwards, and that match itself proved that the Blues need a finisher to capitalise on the midfield talent they currently boast. Rooney played deeper than he would at Chelsea, but showed his physicality and eye for goal.

United, who possibly edged the second-half, were crying out for a player like Bale to change the course of the match. Their defence held up well against Chelsea's advances, and in Van Persie they possess a goalscorer of the highest calibre, but they desperately needed someone to unlock a defence. Rooney looked the likeliest to do this, but was largely restricted to strikes from afar.

Despite Chelsea's claims that he is indispensable, Chelsea's midfield displayed much endeavour and creativity in the absence of Mata, and if he finds himself increasingly benched, then speculation will mount. Clearly a prodigious talent, and one of last season's star performers, it is not yet clear how Mourinho truly feels about the Spaniard.

So while the match offered little on the field, it will be discussed and analysed in the coming days for what is shows about the two sides. Both managers have heated up an already stoked transfer market with their post-match comments and this week will reveal much. 

What is ominous for other clubs is that both sides look close to a powerful compliment already this season. It is clear the managers have identified their targets and should either Moyes or Mourinho secure them, then it is likely that the reverse fixture will have a vastly different scoreline.

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Topics:
Premier League
Football
Gareth Bale
Chelsea
Manchester United
Wayne Rooney
Juan Mata

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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