English Premiership

Mikel nears Valencia switch

2017-01-03 15:13
STALWART: John Obi Mikel of Chelsea is one of the most decorated players in the Premier League. (Julian Finney, Getty Images)

Cape Town - Super Eagles captain, Mikel John Obi has agreed a deal in principle to join Valencia from English club, Chelsea according several sections of the Spanish and English media.

If the midfielder eventually puts pen to paper for the Spanish club, it will bring to an end, a 10-year spell in west London.

The move however hinges on the future of West Ham striker Simone Zaza.

Valencia must now make a big decision as Financial Fair Play (FFP) restrictions mean that they will not be able to afford to sign both Mikel and top target Zaza simultaneously this month.

Italian international Zaza has been a complete flop with West Ham since arriving on loan from Juventus in the summer, and was all set to move to Valencia this month at the request of head coach Cesare Prandelli.

But after the former Italy boss quit this week after issuing an ultimatum over five new January signings that he coveted, the Zaza deal is now on ice as club owner Peter Lim and sporting director Pitarch decide on where to focus their resources.

Mikel, who boasts 78 caps in international football, has found himself frozen out by new Blues boss Antonio Conte as league-leading Chelsea evolved their style under the Italian coach.

And after failing to make a single Premier League appearance this season, Mikel has agreed the outline details of a move to Mestalla after meeting with Valencia's sporting director, Jesus Garcia Pitarch, in London.

Mikel, meanwhile, is also being chased by Ligue 1 side Olympique Marseille and clubs from the Chinese Super League but is understood to prefer a La Liga move.

The 29-year-old joined Chelsea in 2006 in a protracted and controversial transfer, having initially signed a deal with Manchester United. The Blues ended up paying United £12 million for the midfielder, plus £4 million to Norwegian side Lyn Oslo.

Read more on:    valencia  |  chelsea  |  john obi mikel  |  soccer

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Saturday, 20 January 2018
Brighton & Hove Albion v Chelsea, The American Express Community Stadium 14:30
Stoke City v Huddersfield Town, Bet365 Stadium 17:00
Arsenal v Crystal Palace, Emirates Stadium 17:00
Everton v West Bromwich Albion, Goodison Park 17:00
Leicester City v Watford, King Power Stadium 17:00
West Ham United v AFC Bournemouth, London Stadium 17:00
Burnley v Manchester United, Turf Moor 17:00
Manchester City v Newcastle United, Etihad Stadium 19:30
Sunday, 21 January 2018
Southampton v Tottenham Hotspur, St. Mary's Stadium 18:00
Monday, 22 January 2018
Swansea City v Liverpool, Liberty Stadium 22:00
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2017/18 season?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.