Chelsea have today finalised the signing of Mateo Kovacic from Real Madrid on a season-long loan deal.
After signing on loan in west London, Kovacic told the club’s official website: “I am really happy and excited to be here at Chelsea. It is an amazing feeling.
“I will try to do my best for this club.
“It is a new league for me, the beginning is always tough but I am sure the coach and my new team-mates will help me and I am looking forward to a great season.”
Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia added: “We are very happy to welcome Mateo to the Chelsea family.
“He is a perfect fit for us this season, his style is well suited to how Maurizio wants to play and we are sure he will prove to be a valuable asset for the club.”
Soon after his arrival last night, Kovačić also gave a brief first interview to Chelsea TV (again, exclusive to the official app, The 5th Stand — free on iOS and Android), in English, wherein he reflected on a busy summer and an exciting move to London.
“I am really happy, excited to be here at Chelsea. It’s an amazing feeling. […] I will try to do my best.”
“I hope I will come straight to the team, to show my best, and that for me now is the most important thing. […] It will be nice to play here of course but there is a coach who needs to decide and I need to give my best to prove myself.”
Kovačić is of course looking forward to playing with Kanté and Jorginho, but he’s also looking forward to the challenge of the Premier League. When asked about the relative ease with which Real can win trophies when compared to Chelsea, he gives a perfect answer.
“For sure [with Real it’s easier] but I think this team is winning a lot in the last years so I am coming to a team that is winning all the time. I am happy to be at Chelsea. Great club, amazing city and like I said before, I will give my best for the team and say a huge thank you to Chelsea for giving me this opportunity.”
One of Mateo’s teammates both at Real and at the national team is a certain Luke Modrić, who used to live in London as well and once came close to making the move to Stamford Bridge. As it turns out, Luka gave some good advice to his younger friend just now.
“I am speaking to Luka always. He is of course happy for me, sad that I am leaving because we are very close there, but London is an amazing city. […] He said the Premier League will be tough in the beginning but it is a nice league, amazing football, the stadiums are full and I will enjoy it.”
Now he just has to get into match shape. Arrizabalaga may be expected to play on Saturday already, but Kovačić probaby won’t be quite as ready.
“I didn’t train a lot in Madrid now because I wanted too badly to come to Chelsea so I didn’t have too many trainings, but I will give my best to be ready soon.”