Date: 10th June 2013 at 3:00pm
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SL Benfica vs Chelsea FCBenfica defender Ezequiel Garay is being targeted by Chelsea as a cheaper alternative to Porto’s Eliaquim Mangala, according to the Portuguese press.

O Jogo and the Sunday Telegraph reported that Chelsea may be put off by Mangala’s hefty release clause and will instead look to Garay, who can go for €20 million.

Garay has been heavily linked with Manchester United, where he’s expected to eventually end up, but it could be Jose Mourinho’s first ‘win’ against new opponent David Moyes and if anyone can persuade a footballer to opt for Chelsea it is Mourinho.

I think it’s safe to say that Chelsea will be in the market for a central defender for next season which has cast doubt over our current crop but the media aren’t quite sure which defender as the futures of David Luiz, John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic have been speculated over at one point or another.

It’s doubtful Luiz is going anywhere unless there’s a huge bid and Terry wants to stay, even though it’s likely that he won’t be first choice due to injury and fitness concerns. With rumours that Kenneth Omeruo will be part of the first-team squad it could see Chelsea cashing in on Ivanovic as the Nigerian can play backup at right-back and central defence in the same way the Serbian does.

As for Garay, it would probably make more sense to go for him than it would Mangala, who is highly priced and still very young at 22. Garay, now 26, is much more of a finished product and I think people are a little too quick to judge him based on his unsuccessful stint at Real Madrid but the player has completely turned himself around at Benfica.

Do you think Garay and David Luiz would make a good defensive partnership?

Source: O Jogo and the Telegraph