Free agent Mineiro to sign for Chelsea

September 21, 2008

Chelsea boss Luiz Felipe Scolari is set to sign Mineiro for midfield cover in a move that has added significance following an injury to Deco in the warm-up of the clash against Manchester United.

Scolari acknowledged Deco's absence playing a role in a poor start against United at Stamford Bridge, with Salomon Kalou required to level 10 minutes from full-time to extend Chelsea's unbeaten home record in Premier League matches to 85.

Deco was thought to have picked up a thigh injury before the draw, then Ricardo Carvalho also damaged his knee during the game - and both will be assessed to determine the extent of the damage.

Mineiro is expected to be announced as a Chelsea player within 24 hours after agreeing terms to sign as a free agent following a spell with Hertha Berlin. Scolari made a move for the Brazil midfielder as he also has Michael Essien sidelined.

"Mineiro is a player I need because I lost Essien for six months and only John Mikel Obi is there for us,'' said Scolari. "He won't play this week but maybe after 10 days he will play.

"He needs to play in the reserve team and needs some time but that is good for me because he gives me some options.

"We would miss Deco, it would not be good news. But it's hard to say at the moment (how bad the injury is).''