Chelsea target Jules Kounde says he is ‘not going anywhere’ after reports claimed he wanted to leave Barcelona after just one season.
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The Blues have held an interest in Kounde since 2021 and last summer they appeared to have finally got their man, agreeing a €55million deal with Sevilla for the France international.
However, Barcelona swooped in to hijack the deal with Xavi playing an instrumental role in his decision to reject a move to Stamford Bridge.
The 24-year-old has gone on to have a great first season, winning La Liga and finishing runner-up at the World Cup.
But reports emerged on Tuesday that the defender was unhappy at Camp Nou due to being played out of position at right-back rather than his natural centre-back role.
They claimed Kounde could seek a transfer away this summer, with Chelsea potentially ready to renew their interest in him, despite already signing three centre-backs this season: Kalidou Koulibaly, Wesley Fofana and Benoit Badiashile.
Other reports also suggest that Manchester United are interested in his services, especially with Harry Maguire seemingly destined to leave Old Trafford.
But now Kounde himself has dismissed the transfer speculation, posting on Twitter on Thursday: ‘To make it clear: at no time did I ask to go out, so I’m not going anywhere.’
Barcelona naturally want their star to stay, with Xavi holding talks with the player to diffuse the situation, telling reporters: ‘I spoke to him, yes, we were happy and everything was clear.
‘I don’t see any problems. We both came out of the meeting happy.’
Chelsea meanwhile need to focus not only on signing new players but keeping hold of them as well, with star midfielder Mason Mount edging closer to leaving west London amid strong interest from United.
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