Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti insisted last night that the club will not sell Ashley Cole to Real Madrid.
The England left-back has been reported to be keen on a move to the Bernabeu to play under Jose Mourinho once more, but Ancelotti is adamant that Cole will remain at Stamford Bridge.
Speaking after watching his side lose their latest pre-season friendly, 2-1 to Eintracht Frankfurt, Ancelotti said: "Ashley Cole will not be sold at any price. There is no price that we would sell him at.
"We believe he is the best left-back in the world and because of this he will stay at this club. Nothing has changed in our position. Everyone can forget about Ashley Cole leaving this club."
Mesut Ozil, who has been interesting Chelsea, insisted yesterday that he intends to honour the remaining year of his contract with Werder Bremen, a prospect that is likely to disappoint several Premier League clubs.
The 21-year-old German midfielder's impressive form at the World Cup, where he helped them reach the semi-finals, propelled him up the wanted list of a number of Europe's top clubs. He has been linked in recent weeks with Real Madrid, Manchester United and Arsenal as well as Chelsea.
"For now, my situation for the next 12 months is clear," said Ozil. "Only the facts count and the fact is I am under contract with Werder. I am a friend of honesty. Many people extend their contracts long-term for better conditions, but two weeks later they want to leave. I have never done that but have rather always respected my contract and been happy to fulfil it. Why should now be any different?"
Everton manager David Moyes has conceded defeat in his efforts to bring Landon Donovan back to Goodison Park. The LA Galaxy midfielder impressed during a four-month loan spell on Merseyside last season, scoring two goals in 13 appearances, and although Moyes was keen to bring the 28-year-old back, he says the asking price is too high.
"Don't you think I've asked my chairman [Bill Kenwright] to make it happen?" the Scot said. "We'd love to have Landon, but he looks too expensive for us and we just don't have [the money]."
Out-of-favour Manchester City midfielder Stephen Ireland has spoken of his desire to remain at the club and fight for a place in Roberto Mancini's side.
"I am very ambitious but accept things are out of my hands," the 23-year-old Irishman said. "I have a contract so all I can do is keep performing and presenting myself well in training. I want to push for a place in the starting 11."Reuse content