Sources are reporting that Andre Villas-Boas is ready to follow up speculation and sign his former charge, Joao Moutinho, in the January transfer window as he looks to add some flair to his faltering Chelsea side.
Moutinho played under Villas-Boas during his triumphant one-year stint at the helm of the current Europa League champions, and has impressed greatly in his 18 months with the side.
The 25 year-old completed a controversial Primeira Liga transfer from bitter rivals Sporting Lisbon in the summer of 2010, and played a major role in firing the Portistas to double glory.
Villas-Boas made no secret of his intentions to sign a creative midfielder over the summer transfer window, having several approaches for Tottenham’s Luka Modric rejected, as well as being linked with a swoop for Wesley Sneijder at one point.
Although the new Blues boss ended up landing Raul Meireles in an eleventh hour deal, it’s easy to argue that he still didn’t get his man, who will presumably be signed as a long-term replacement for Frank Lampard.
Speculation claims that the Portuguese manager will return with an improved Modric bid of £40m upwards but should he fail in his attempts to buy the creative Croatian, Moutinho seems likely to be seen as an alternative.
Although still not cheap in the common sense of the term, the £18m price-tag of Moutinho could provide a more attractive prospect. Although the Spurs star is proven in the English top flight, paying half the amount for a Portuguese international with the clear potential for genius could make more sense.