Villas-Boas: Torres will not be leaving
Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas today insisted striker Fernando Torres was not for sale at any price - in January or next summer. Reports have suggested the Blues may be prepared to cut their losses on the most expensive player ever transferred between British clubs by offloading him for just £20m next month.
Chelsea yesterday branded such claims "nonsense", while Villas-Boas maintained this morning that the man who cost the club £50m from Liverpool in January was going nowhere. "It's not true, I'm sorry," said Villas-Boas, adding Torres would "for sure" be at Stamford Bridge next season. "He's not available at any price."
Speculation has also been rife about the future of Frank Lampard, who found himself dropped for Chelsea's two biggest matches of the season during the past nine days. The 33-year-old, who has been linked with a move to the
Villas-Boas admitted he had not specifically discussed Lampard's omission with the midfielder, but said: "We speak every day." He added: "There are plenty of players who push for starting XI selection and Frank is not the only one. There are people making great efforts to get in this Chelsea squad.
"Lamps is, I think, one of the top five players most used. Every player wants to be involved in every game but sometimes it's just not possible. I treat everybody equally. It's pretty clear that everybody wants to play in every single game.
"You will find it from Frank but if you interview other people you will find it from (Florent) Malouda and (Salomon) Kalou and Paulo (Ferreira) the same. Everybody wants to play in every single game and everybody pushes to be in every single game. Sometimes, it's not possible."
Villas-Boas was confident Lampard would not quit Chelsea, with the midfielder last month expressing a desire to extend his contract, which expires at the end of next campaign. Revealing the England star's agent had made contact with Blues chief executive Ron Gourlay, Villas-Boas said: "From what Ron Gourlay told me, I think Steve Kutner contacted him recently but I'm not sure what is the situation. I think we haven't decided yet what to do."