1) Shakhtar beat Chelsea to Taison :
Shakhtar Donetsk have beaten Chelsea to the signing of Metalist Kharkiv’s Taison. The 24-year-old midfielder has long been linked with a move to west London and was reportedly on the brink of moving to Stamford Bridge earlier in January. After an initial €11m (£9m) bid was rejected, the Ukrainian champions paid the €20m release clause to sign the Brazilian.
2) Chelsea’s last effort to sign Pep Guardiola :
Chelsea’s interim manager Rafael Benitez has accepted he won’t be given the job permanently after the home loss to Swansea, the Sun said. Roman Abramovich will make a “take it or leave it” 18 million pound ($29 million) per year offer to Pep Guardiola to become Chelsea coach, the Daily Express said. The Blues’ owner is willing to make the Spaniard the world’s highest-paid coach by offering 54 million pounds over three years, the Express said. Manchester United’s Alex Ferguson is Britain’s highest-paid coach, earning 7.6 million pounds per year, the newspaper said. Abramovich, currently on vacation in the Caribbean, is furious about Chelsea’s 2-0 loss to Swansea two nights ago in the first leg of the League Cup semifinals, the Express said.
3) Last ditch attempt to get Sneijder :
Chelsea are readying a last ditch move to land Inter Milan playmaker Wesley Sneijder, with the Dutchman said to be in advanced talks with Turkish giants Galatasaray. The 28 year old is seemingly set to leave the San Siro this month and Inter Milan have already accepted an offer from Galatasaray but any move to the Istanbul club will entail the former Ajax and Real Madrid man taking a hefty pay-cut and Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich is ready to make an offer he hopes will lure the talented midfielder to Stamford Bridge. Chelsea will meet the €10m (£8.3m) Inter Milan asking price and will apparently over a salary far nearer to Sneijder’s current £220k a week than Galatasaray are willing to offer.
Other News :
1) Billy Clifford to Colchester :
Colchester United have signed young Chelsea midfielder Billy Clifford on loan for one month.
The 20-year-old has yet to make a first-team appearance for the Premier League club, but has featured in Champions League squads.
He will be eligible for Saturday’s League One visit of Scunthorpe.
2) Benitez to Real Madrid :
With talk of Mourinho out of Madrid and Benitez not getting a permanent deal with Chelsea, Rafael Benitez believes he could be a target for Real Madrid in the summer if his spell as interim manager of Chelsea finishes with the sack at the end of the season.
3) Fiorentina interested in Lampard :
Fiorentina are the latest club to declare an interest as the race to sign Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard on a free transfer at the end of the season begins to hot up. Lampard looks destined to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season when his contract runs out after his representatives revealed that no new offer has been put on the table, and Italy seems a likely destination with Fiorentina joining Juventus, Lazio and Inter Milan in being interested.