Club deny Chelsea target move: 'No intention of selling' - who next?

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Internazionale now appear adamant on retaining the services of seemingly Chelsea-bound all-rounder.

Chelsea, apparently a near lock to acquire versatile Internazionale midfielder Fredy Guarin, 27, appear to have been thwarted during the negotiation process with the San Siro club.

Previous reports implied that a previous £13m bid had been unsuccessful as the selling club hoped for an additional two million at least, while Guarin's representatives had been in London to engage in talks, however, sporting director Piero Ausilio has indicated that they now have no intention of doing business with the Stamford Bridge side.

Ausilio told Sky Sports Italia: 'Guarin is an Inter player and we are happy to keep him. Denying the contacts with Chelsea would be denying the evidence. It is a source of pride to talk with them about one of our players, but everything stopped there.

'We are happy Guarin could stay with us for a long time. We don't have the intention to sell him. He's an important player.'

This season, the Colombian has been in fine form, delivering seven assists and three goals from 18 matches in the Serie A (a goal/assist return of one per 147 minutes on average), predominantly from a playmaking position.

While the physically-adept player may not offer anything more than Willian, Juan Mata, Oscar or Andre Schurrle in an attacking position for Chelsea, it was believed he could either play alongside Ramires, or provide competition for places in a deeper role, as he has shown a box-to-box nous in Italy, also.

While a move for a striker is the obvious choice due to the collective misfiring and inconsistent nature of Demba Ba, Samuel Eto'o and Fernando Torres, the interest in Guarin was genuine, so if he is now unavailable, who could Chelsea pursue instead?

Jose Mourinho has also been linked with former Liverpool asset Xabi Alonso, a player he coached first hand during his time at Real Madrid and one who may prove slightly more costly than Guarin, yet would require no adaptation period due to his previous experiences in the Premier League.

The British press, though, regard a move for a defender more likely, as Chelsea have been associated with moves for Basel's Fabian Schar, Porto player Nicolas Otamendi, Nantes defender Papy Djilobodji and Villarreal pro Mateo Musacchio.

image: © Jason Bagley

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