Blues forced to settle for one goal in Bangkok | South China Morning Post
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Blues forced to settle for one goal in Bangkok

Mourinho's first game in charge overshadowed as Chelsea confirm audacious bid for Rooney

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 18 July, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 18 July, 2013, 4:50am

Romelu Lukaku handed Jose Mourinho a winning start to his new reign as Chelsea manager yesterday with a perfectly timed debut goal after the club confirmed a bid for Wayne Rooney.

The towering Didier Drogba look-a-like drilled a first-half penalty to give new-look Chelsea a 1-0 win over the Singha All-Star XI, who humbled English champions Manchester United by the same scoreline last week.

Lukaku, who starred on loan with West Bromwich Albion last season, has vowed to fight for his place even if Chelsea sign a striker of the calibre of Manchester United's unsettled forward Rooney.

Mourinho confirmed Chelsea had made an offer for the 27-year-old. He added that no other players were involved in the bid and quashed speculation that Spain's Juan Mata or Brazil's David Luiz were to be offered as makeweights to lure the England striker to Stamford Bridge.

"Chelsea are interested in this player, made a bid and what we did we did officially," Mourinho said. "We did what we have to do in a proper way, in an ethical way. We feel very happy with our behaviour because it was clean ... we made the bid and now it is up to Man United and up the player. And we will always respect their decision

"We don't want to make public the bid but it is just a certain amount of money and it doesn't involve [any other] players in the possibility of negotiation. No Juan Mata, no David Luiz."

Asked whether Chelsea's transfer plans amounted to "Rooney or bust", Mourinho replied: "Yes."

According to reports in the British media, Rooney is angry and confused with his current situation.

This comes in the wake of comments from his manager David Moyes that suggested he was a back-up to last season's Premier League top scorer Robin van Persie.

Moyes said last week: "Overall, my thought on Wayne is that if for any reason we had an injury to Robin van Persie we are going to need him."

Mourinho said that he did not know United's response to the Chelsea bid. "Now I keep trying to improve my players and we will see what happens," he added.

"From me no more comments with respect to Man United, my colleague David Moyes and my players. I trust my players and I am happy with them and in this bid I want to be respectful."

Adding to the intrigue about Rooney's future was news that United vice-chairman Ed Woodward was flying back to England early from the Australia leg of the club's pre-season tour to conduct undisclosed transfer business.

Chelsea now head to Kuala Lumpur and then Jakarta as they continue their build-up to the new season under Mourinho.

Agence France-Presse, Reuters, Associated Press

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