Fernando Torres will not be sold insists Andre Villas-Boas
Thursday 15 December 2011
Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas today insisted striker Fernando Torres was not for sale at any price - in January or next summer.
The Independent revealed today that Torres has until the end of the season to improve his game or Chelsea will offload him.
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 £20million next month.
Chelsea yesterday branded such claims "nonsense", while Villas-Boas maintained this morning that the man who cost the club £50million 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 Los Angeles Galaxy, claimed Villas-Boas had yet to explain to him why he had lost his place.
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."
Another player Villas-Boas insisted would not be leaving Chelsea was summer signing Oriol Romeu.
Barcelona have reportedly disputed the precise nature of a buyback clause in the contract of the midfielder they sold to the Blues for £4.35million.
The clause states Barca can resign Romeu for £8.7million next summer and £13million the following year but Chelsea maintain that only applies if they agree to sell.
Villas-Boas said: "I've clarified that situation.
"I know that it came out of the Spanish press exactly the opposite of what I said.
"But I'm pretty clear in what I said and I won't make any further comment."
A Chelsea spokesman added: "The contract stipulates that in any buyback clause it's only if Chelsea wishes to sell. So essentially it's a first option.
"It does state it clearly in that contract and that contract is lodged with FIFA."
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