Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo has confirmed that the club is looking to loan out Michael Essien following the midfielder’s exclusion from the UEFA Super Cup squad but insists that Arsenal isn’t a possible destination.
Speculation has been rife in the last 24 hours that Gunners boss Arsene Wenger favors a season-long loan for the 29-year old Ghana international but Di Matteo has made it clear that the Blues won’t let him move to North London.
In a statement to Sky Sports, the Blues manager – who is currently with the team in Monaco – revealed hopes of completing a deal within the next few hours before the transfer window shuts.
Chelsea have plenty of cover in midfield, with Raul Meireles, Oriol Romeu, Ramires, John Obi Mikel, and Frank Lampard all capable of playing in Essien’s central position.
In related Chelsea news, Sky Sports has also confirmed that Blues target Edinson Cavani has signed an extension to his Napoli contract and has committed to staying in the Serie A till 2017.
The news might prompt Chelsea to retain the services of Daniel Sturridge, who has been benched for tonight’s Super Cup match against Atletico Madrid amid speculation of a loan move to either Liverpool or Tottenham.
Both clubs have also been linked aggressively with Fulham’s want-away winger Clint Dempsey but regardless of whether or not Chelsea send Sturridge out, they are reportedly serious with a massive bid to add Bayer Leverkusen’s highly rated Germany international Andre Schurrle to their squad.