Posted: Wed January 15, 2014 12:38PM; Updated: Wed January 15, 2014 12:38PM

Benfica sells Nemanja Matic back to Chelsea for $34 million

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Nemanja Matic
Benfica sold midfielder Nemanja Matic, right, back to Chelsea for a huge profit after acquiring him from the Blues in 2011.
Francisco Seco/AP

LISBON, Portugal (AP) - Benfica says it has sold midfielder Nemanja Matic back to Chelsea at a healthy profit.

The Portuguese club said in a statement to the Lisbon stock exchange Wednesday it sold the Serbian international for 25 million euros ($34 million). Chelsea confirmed the 25-year-old had signed a five-and-a-half-year contract.

The 25-year-old left Stamford Bridge in 2011 as a makeweight in an agreement that took Brazilian defender David Luiz from the Stadium of Light to London.

Matic grew into a key player at Benfica, helping the club reach last season's Europa League final where it lost against Chelsea.

Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho said Matic ''has grown as a player in Portugal and has become a fantastic all-round midfielder.''

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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