Saturday 16 December 2017

Monaco to tempt Terry with £7.8m tax-free deal

John Terry
John Terry

Jason Burt

MONACO will offer John Terry a tax-free salary of £150,000 a week in an effort to persuade him to leave Chelsea this summer.

The mega-rich, promoted to the French first division this season and therefore not involved in European competition, plan to offer Chelsea a fee of around £7m for Terry and the player a similar wage to the one he currently earns, but free of tax, which would see him pocket £7.8m per year. They also plan to offer him a contract to cover at least two more years.

Monaco are managed by former Chelsea boss Claudio Ranieri, who worked with Terry for nearly four years at Stamford Bridge and made him club captain.

Billionaire owner Dmitry Rybolovlev is undertaking an extraordinary summer of transfer expenditure. They have already paid a record £50m for Atletico Madrid striker Radamel Falcao, and a further £60m on Porto midfielders Joao Moutinho and James Rodriguez.

EXTENSION

Terry (32) has previously insisted he wants to see out his contract with Chelsea, regardless of whether the club then offer him an extension beyond next summer.

However, he is likely to seek clarification from Jose Mourinho as to what role he is likely to play next season before making any decision on his future.

Despite Mourinho's admiration for Terry, who is also wanted by Galatasaray, Chelsea's new manager is known to be considering defensive targets, with 20-year-old Real Madrid centre-half Raphael Varane on his list of targets.

However, a deal to sign Varane from his old club will be difficult so Porto's Eliaquim Mangala is a potential alternative. Should either player sign, it would limit further Terry's involvement next season.

Another factor could be the future of David Luiz, which seems in doubt with Paris St-Germain understood to be prepared to bid for the 26-year-old as a replacement for fellow Brazilian Alex.

Luiz is happy at Chelsea but that situation could be tested if a bid is made by either PSG or Barcelona. It is believed that Chelsea would be willing to sell him for around £32m, which would help Mourinho's reshaping of the squad.

Mourinho does not want to force Luiz out but realises that the player is one of his most saleable assets and could be expendable, even though he signed a new long-term contract at the start of last season.

Luiz would be interested in moving to Barcelona, while there is also the possibility of Real entering the bidding – but only if they sell Pepe, which is thought unlikely.

Real hope to announce that Carlo Ancelotti is leaving PSG to become their new coach, and the club's clear priorities are Gareth Bale and Luis Suarez.

If Luiz did leave it would be a surprise given he is not only regarded as a favourite of Roman Abramovich but has been earmarked as a future Chelsea captain. He is a popular member of the squad, especially with its young core of Portuguese and Spanish speakers.

Luiz arrived at Chelsea from Benfica in January 2011 for £21m, with midfielder Nemanja Matic a makeweight in the deal. There have been strong suggestions that Mourinho might want to bring Matic back to Chelsea but the 25-year-old has a buy-out clause of £40m in his new contract.

Mourinho will make his first official appearance since being appointed Chelsea manager today after agreeing to coach a World XI against a Michael Ballack and Friends team, and will use the game as an opportunity to wrap up the £20m signing of attacking midfielder Andre Schurrle.

Mourinho has also made it clear to Romelu Lukaku that he does not want him to leave on loan again.

The Belgium international impressed at West Brom last season, and Baggies head coach Steve Clarke, Mourinho's former assistant at Stamford Bridge, was hopeful of securing a similar deal for the next campaign.

Kevin De Bruyne, who prefers the idea of a permanent move to Borussia Dortmund after a loan spell at Werder Bremen, will meet the new manager before a decision is made on his future. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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