Villas-Boas hopeful stalwart Drogba will sign new deal
Published 24/06/2011 | 05:00
New Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas remains open to the possibility of Didier Drogba extending his contract at the club, even if he does seal the signing of Falcao from Porto.
Falcao, the Colombia striker, is understood to be keen to follow Villas-Boas to Chelsea, but Porto president Pinto da Costa has resolved not to allow any of his players to leave for less than their respective release clauses. Falcao's is £26m, a fee that Chelsea are still expected to try and negotiate down. "If there are termination clauses we have to prepare for the possibility that a player will leave," said Da Costa. "But I am not going to negotiate that price with anyone."
Jose Mourinho's Real Madrid are also interested in Falcao, but currently appear more likely to sign Brazilian striker Neymar.
The striker, whose on-field behaviour came under scrutiny yesterday when he was involved in violent clashes during his current club Santos' Copa Libertadores tie against Uruguay's Penarol, had been another Chelsea target.
Should Falcao arrive at Stamford Bridge, Villas-Boas would face the issue of how he also accommodates Drogba, Fernando Torres, Nicolas Anelka and Salomon Kalou.
However, there is a sense that the fluid 4-3-3 formation will provide extra options for the attacking players, with Villas-Boas keen to meet the existing squad and observe them in pre-season before making any decisions. It had been assumed that Drogba would leave this summer, but Chelsea have been impressed by his performances and attitude since the £50m arrival of Torres in January.
Tottenham are among the rival clubs with an interest in Drogba but Chelsea can offer Champions League football, while the inevitable rotation policy could be beneficial to his chances of prolonging his career at the highest level.