Aston Villa are keen to secure a permanent deal for Ryan Bertrand when his loan spell is complete, the Mirror understands.
The England full back swapped London for Midlands back in January, joining up with Paul Lambert’s side for the rest of the season.
He has made seven Premier League appearances since arriving at Villa Park, having made just ten in the whole of 2013 for Chelsea, just one of which coming since Jose Mourinho returned to the club.
The 24 year old has two years left on his contract with the Blues, but is understood to be open to the idea of moving on.
He is unable to feature in the game against his parent club this weekend, but is confident that he can help the side achieve a top half finish for the first time in three years, according to Sky Sports.
Meanwhile, the Daily Star understand that the club are yet to open talks with goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois regarding his future, according his father.
The Belgium international is currently enjoying a third successive season with La Liga title challengers Atletico Madrid, and is reportedly wanted by both Atleti and their city rivals Real on a permanent basis.
Chelsea extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to seven points by beating Tottenham Hotspur 4-0 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon.
After a goalless first half Samuel Eto’o, who was only on the field as Fernando Torres withdrew after picking up an injury in the pre-match warm up, put the hosts in front eleven minutes after the break.
Eden Hazard fired in his fifteenth goal of the season from the penalty spot shortly after to double the Blues’ advantage before a late brace from substitute Demba Ba put the result beyond doubt.
Jose Mourinho’s men are now seven points clear of Liverpool and Arsenal in second and third place respectively, though both have a game in hand, while fourth place Manchester City are nine points off the top with a three game advantage on the leaders.
The Blues’ boss has insisted that Manuel Pellegrini’s men are still favourites to reclaim the Premier League from their neighbours, saying that he would ‘prefer to be in City’s position’.
The club will now turn their attention to next weekend’s visit of Aston Villa, before facing Galatasaray at Stamford Bridge in the second leg of their Champions League last sixteen tie.
With no other sides in the top four playing in the Premier League this weekend, Chelsea will be looking to increase their lead at the top as they take on fifth place Tottenham Hotspur.
The Blues, who will increase their unbeaten home league run under Jose Mourinho to seventy-five games if they avoid defeat, should have top scorer Eden Hazard available after he declared himself fit despite suffering an ankle injury in Belgium’s 2-2 draw with Ivory Coast.
Midfielder Marco van Ginkel, who is still some weeks away from returning to action, is Jose Mourinho’s only injury concern.
Chelsea can move seven points clear of both Liverpool and Arsenal, and nine clear of Manchester City if they take all three points though the latter will have three games in hand.
Meanwhile, Jose Mourinho has hinted that he may make a move for Mario Balotelli at the end of the season, according to the Metro.
The AC Milan striker, who played under the Blues boss at Inter where together they won three league titles, the Coppa Italia and the Champions League, is reportedly unhappy with life in Italy leading to speculation that he could be set for a return to the Premier League.
Ashley Cole moved on to 107 international caps for England last night, moving him ahead of all-time top scorer Bobby Charlton, but whether he will be adding to that tally in Brazil in the summer remains unclear.
The 33 year old played the first forty-five minutes in the 1-0 win over Denmark at Wembley, replaced by Southampton’s Luke Shaw at half-time.
Earlier in the week, Three Lions’ captain Steven Gerrard said that Shaw, 18, could be England’s left-back for the next ten years, but with Leighton Baines omission from Roy Hodgson’s starting line-up yesterday suggesting his place in his World Cup squad is assured, the question is whether his regular inclusion with the squad will begin now, or after the finals.
Should Cole make the cut, it would almost certainly be his international swansong, though Shaw impressed on his debut adding to shouts for him to pip the former Arsenal man to a place on the plane.
Shaw has been linked with a move to Stamford Bridge in recent months, with a bid expected to be made when the transfer window reopens in the summer.
Manchester United are also set to make an over, though with Blues reportedly the team he supports, it is they who arguably have the edge.
Spanish giants Barcelona are closing in on the signing of Chelsea’s David Luiz, according to the Metro.
The La Liga champions have been linked with a move for the Brazil international for some time, and are now hopeful of completing a deal at the end of the season as they look for a replacement for outgoing centre-back Carlos Puyol.
The Spain international admitted that he is set to leave the Nou Camp in the summer during an emotional press conference yesterday, having spent his whole career with the club.
Luiz has made just thirteen league appearances since Jose Mourinho returned to the club, and the Blues boss is likely to sell if Barca meet his £25m valuation.
The former Benfica man is set to win his 34th international cap against South Africa in Johannesburg this evening, alongside Chelsea teammates Oscar, Ramires and Willian.
Elsewhere, Petr Cech has been named Czech Republic’s player of the year for 2013, the Daily Star understands.
The Blues’ number one, who has now won the award for the past six years, beat Arsenal’s Tomas Rosicky and Frieburg’s Vladmir Darida into second and third place respectively, with all three in line to face Norway this evening.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has once again reiterated his belief that Manchester City are favourites to win the Premier League this season, Sky Sports understands.
The Blues opened up a six point lead over Manuel Pellegrini’s men with victory over Fulham at the weekend, though City, who are currently in fourth place, have played two games fewer.
That gap will extend to nine points if Chelsea win their home match with Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday afternoon, with the Manchester side turning their attention to their FA Cup quarter final against holders Wigan Athletic, though Mourinho has insisted that he would prefer be in control of his, and the clubs destiny, as City are.
However, it is the Portuguese manager’s side who are favourites with the bookmakers to finish in first place, despite their inferior goal difference, which currently stands at twelve less than the side managed by his Chilean rival.
Meanwhile, Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri has stated that he is “not scared” of Chelsea ahead of his sides final twelve league games, according to Sky Sports.
The France international, who scored in Sunday’s Capital One Cup final victory over Sunderland, is confident that City have what it takes to wrestle the Premier League trophy back from neighbours Manchester United.
Andre Schurrle bagged a second-half hat-trick as Chelsea opened up a four point lead at the top of the Premier League by beating local rivals Fulham 3-1 at Craven Cottage on Saturday afternoon.
The Germany international broke the deadlock seven minutes into the second half, while just sixteen minutes later, the Blues were out of sight with a comfortable three-nil lead.
Jonny Heitinga soon pulled one back for Felix Magath’s side, who remain rooted to the bottom the table while Jose Mourinho’s men are now four points clear of both Liverpool and Arsenal, and six clear of Manchester City, who now have two games in hand due to their involvement in yesterday’s Capital One Cup final, which they won by three goals to one against Sunderland.
Liverpool secured a comprehensive 3-0 win at Southampton in Saturday’s late Premier League kick-off, while Arsenal fell to a 1-0 defeat at Stoke City.
Chelsea will have the chance to extend their lead at the summit to seven points when they host Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday afternoon, with the rest of the top four not in league action.
Arsenal and Manchester City face Everton and holders Wigan Athletic respectively in the FA Cup quarter finals, while Liverpool don’t play until their league clash against champions Manchester United on Sunday week.
Chelsea return to Premier League action tomorrow afternoon with the short trip to bottom of the table Fulham.
Eden Hazard and Jon Obi Mikel should feature, though neither completed ninety minutes against Galatasaray midweek after shaking off their respective knocks, while David Luiz will be assessed ahead of the game.
Goals from Oscar and Mikel secured victory for the Blues when the sides met at Stamford Bridge back in September, and another three points for Jose Mourinho’s men will ensure that they stay in first place.
However, if they fail to win Arsenal will be able to leapfrog them into pole position with victory at Stoke City, while third place Manchester City are playing in the Capital One Cup final at Wembley on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Ashley Cole has been named in Roy Hodgon’s England squad for next Wednesday’s friendly international against Denmark at Wembley.
The 33 year old will have the chance to win his 107th cap, though he will be up against fellow left-backs Leighton Baines and reported Chelsea target Luke Shaw – the latter of which the only as yet uncapped player in the thirty-man party.
Fellow Blues defender Gary Cahill has also been included, as has midfielder Frank Lampard.
Chelsea’s Champions League last sixteen tie with Galatasaray is finely poised as the two sides played out a 1-1 draw at the Turk Telekom Arena yesterday evening.
Fernando Torres gave the Blues the lead after just nine minutes with an early tap-in only for Aurelien Chedjou to draw the hosts’ level from close range after being left unmarked almost twenty minutes into the second half.
Jose Mourinho’s men remain favourites to qualify for the last eight having, unlike their three Premier League counterparts in the competition, avoided defeat, with the second leg scheduled to take place at Stamford Bridge two weeks on Tuesday.
The club will first turn their attention to Saturday afternoon’s short trip to Fulham, where they will hope to strengthen their grip on first place in the Premier League.
Meanwhile, Chelsea strikers Demba Ba and Samuel Eto’o have insisted that they are not worried about recent comments made by Jose Mourinho which suggested that he is not happy with his current front line, according to Sky Sports.
The Blues boss has also branded the reporter who leaked what was said ‘a disgrace’, when asked about it at a press conference following last night’s game.
Chelsea will have David Luiz and Jon Obi Mikel available for this evenings Champions League last 16 first leg tie against Galatasaray.
Both players missed Saturday afternoon’s 1-0 win over Everton, but have made the trip to the Turkish capital ahead of the game.
Oscar has also made the squad despite being substituted at the weekend with an ankle injury, while Mohammed Salah and Nemanja Matic are both cup-tied having already featured in the competition with Basel and Benfica respectively.
Didier Drogba is expected to lead the line for Roberto Mancini’s men, giving him the chance to come up against the Blues for the first time since leaving Stamford Bridge at the end of the 2011/12 campaign.
He did score in a 3-2 win against Jose Mourinho’s Real Madrid in the second leg of last season’s quarter finals, though Galatasaray lost the tie 5-3 on aggregate.
With the Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal all having lost the first leg of their last sixteen ties against Barcelona, Olympiakos and Barcelona respectively, the Blues are in the best position to guarantee English representation in this season’s last eight for the first time since two years ago, when they went on to lift the trophy in Munich.
Tags: Arsenal, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, David Luiz, Didier Drogba, Galatasaray, Jon Obi Mikel, Manchester City, Manchester United, Mohammed Salah, Nemanja Matic, Olympiakos, Oscar