Chelsea prepare �33m mega bid

CHELSEA will make a �33million bid for Valencia's super Spanish striker David Villa - but he would rather go to rivals Manchester United. (Mirror)

Roman Abramovich has approved a mega bid for the hitman who will be sold by his hard-up club in the next transfer window, and a top agent has been brought in to do the deal.

The Stamford Bridge outfit are planning the raid and hope to have their transfer ban lifted or suspended to let them bring the superstar to London at the second attempt.

However, the Villa camp have revealed that they have already turned down Chelsea once - in the last window - and the player would still prefer to go to United.

Sir Alex Ferguson has been after Villa for months too, as Mirror Sport first revealed in June, but his money men would not pay the �45million asking pric.

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United's American owners are reluctant to invest so much cash in a player with no re-sale value, but Ferguson is still keen to do business if the price drops.

Valencia are in a cash crisis and Villa is unsettled by the fact that they may not be able to give him Champions League football in the future. He is actively looking into alternatives.

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Villa - top scorer as Spain won Euro 2008 - had his heart set on Real Madrid or Barcelona at the start of the season, but as both moved elsewhere he realised that the Premier League is a big option.

A source close to the star said: "David was approached about the Chelsea move in the summer but did not fancy it. He was not sure how often he would play or whether they played his style.

"Manchester United is his first choice in England, but there is a problem with that because of the price and his age. If it can be agreed with Valencia he would sooner go to Old Trafford."

Now Chelsea - back on top of the Premier League but still needing reinforcements - will make a bid for Villa that will be too high for United to match.

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