Chelsea target Radamel Falcao has suggested that he is happy to stay at Atletico Madrid and has put his future firmly in the hands of his club. The Colombia international has been linked with many of Europe’s top clubs, including Manchester City, Real Madrid, Manchester United, as well as Chelsea. Of late reports have emerged that Monaco had offered to meet the player’s €60 million (£51.3m) buyout clause.
Atletico chief executive Miguel Angel Gil-Marin revealed earlier this week that the Copa del Rey winners had promised Falcao last summer that he would be free to move if he helped the side qualify for the Champions League, which he did. Yet, Falcao claimed to not be thinking about a transfer.
“I haven't thought about a move too much," Falcao told Sky Sports News. "The reality is that I have three years left on my contract with Atletico. It's true that last season during the summer there was a lot of speculation with clubs being named as a possible destination, but the truth is that I've not thought about it. Of course, it depends on what the financial needs of my club are and what sort of efforts Atletico make to keep me.”
It is widely believed that Atletico’s financial needs will lead to them cashing in on their top scorer. The identity of his next destination remains firmly in doubt, however, with Manchester City also thought to be willing to meet the 27-year-old’s release clause.
Indeed, if both miss out on Falcao, Chelsea could also find themselves competing with Manchester City for Napoli frontman Edinson Cavani. Napoli’s president, and film producer, Aurelio De Laurentiss has revealed that the Uruguayan, who Chelsea are believed to be chasing, has been the subject of talks with City.
"Yesterday I was in London with [the managing director Andrea] Chiavelli and [sporting director Riccardo] Bigon and for a simple reason: I have to prepare for the release of the film about Steve Jobs. However, I told Bigon: 'Go to City and take the chance to negotiate over [Manchester City striker Edin] Dzeko and see what they are willing to do for Cavani.'”
Cavani has a buyout clause of €63 million (£53m) and Napoli rejected a bid of €55 million (£46m) last summer. Of course, all this speculation comes with Chelsea having yet to appoint a new manager. It is widely expected, though, that outgoing Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho will be returning to the Stamford Bridge dugout. Indeed, the Daily Star claims that Mourinho is already influencing Chelsea’s transfer policy and has set his sights on Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic.
The Serie A club have revealed in recent days that Jovetic’s future is in his own hands after he was persuaded to stay for one more season last year. Arsenal have been strongly linked to the Montenegro international, although Fiorentina have said that they have not received any approach for the 23-year-old. Juventus are considered the front runners for the player’s signature.
Meanwhile, Chelsea look set to face strong competition if they decide to continue their pursuit of Malaga attacking midfielder Isco. The exciting 21-year-old was reported to have been close to a move to Stamford Bridge in January. In recent weeks it appeared that the player would end up at Manchester City, the club his current coach Manuel Pellegrini is expected to join in the coming weeks. Malaga executive Francisco Martin Aguilar hinted that a number of clubs are interested, but insisted that he would not leave for less than his €35 million (£30m) buyout clause.
"If he goes it will be to a big club and it will be to the benefit of the coffers at the club,” he told Radio Marca. Aguilar also revealed that Real Madrid have made contact. “They are interested in him, but nothing is official yet,” he added.