Saturday 20 January 2018

Anelka told he can leave

Nicolas Anelka has been told by Andre Villas-Boas that he is free to leave Stamford Bridge in January, as the Chelsea manager intends to recruit a striker as part of an accelerated revamp of his ageing squad.

The 34-year-old Portuguese, under pressure following a run of three defeats in four games, hopes to make at least three signings in the winter transfer window to ensure his team qualify for next season's Champions League.

Anelka is thought to be downbeat at being told Villas-Boas will not stand in his way if a suitable offer arrives, with sources close to the 32-year-old Frenchman adamant Chelsea remain "in his heart".

A number of clubs have expressed an interest in Anelka -- who has not even travelled to Germany as part of the Chelsea squad -- but reports in France that he has agreed a €10.6m-per-year salary with the Chinese side Shanghai Shensua are believed to be premature.

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