Atletico Madrid fear being priced out of Mata pursuit

The Liga outfit have expressed an interest in signing the 25-year-old playmaker, who has fallen down the pecking order at Chelsea, but believe he could be too expensive
Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has admitted the club are interested in Chelsea's Juan Mata, but may not be able to afford the playmaker.

The Spain international's future has been the subject of intense speculation following the arrival of Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge, with the 25-year-old only starting one of the Blues' three Premier League fixtures under the Portuguese.

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Mata has been muted by Chelsea as a potential makeweight in a move for Manchester United attacker Wayne Rooney, but Mourinho has continually insisted he is determined to keep the former Valencia midfielder.

But with Mata's future uncertain, Atletico appear keen to attempt to lure the Spaniard back to La Liga, even if it is only on loan as hinted at by manager Diego Simeone, though president Cerezo says the club are likely to be priced out of a move.

"Mata is a good player," Cerezo said following Atletico's 5-0 victory over Real Valladolid. "But he is in the Premier League and over there they are paid a lot.

"We have a fantastic squad and right now I do not know if the coach is planning to bring in anyone else or not, but even so, we have seven days."