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SPORTS UPDATE

EPL: ‘Chelsea sale could affect out-of-contract players’ – Tuchel

Head coach Thomas Tuchel has admitted that Chelsea being put up for sale will only add to the uncertainty surrounding their out-of-contract players.
Cesar Azpilicueta, Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger are all in line to become free agents in the summer if they do not pen fresh terms at Stamford Bridge.

However, with the news that Roman Abramovich has put the West Londoners up for sale, any negotiations involving all three could realistically be put on hold.

Nevertheless, Tuchel says that he still hopes for “the best outcome”, insisting that the Russian billionaire’s exit could even aid getting deals over the line.

Speaking to reporters at a press conference, Tuchel said: “This is the situation. Maybe the bottom line is that we cannot help it. You never know, maybe it has a positive effect on the negotiation, maybe it has a negative effect.

“We cannot predict, and I would not like to predict all scenarios because we just lose focus on it. Of course, everyone has a different situation, feels differently about it. Still, I hope for the best outcome.

“I think Chelsea has something to offer, Chelsea is a strong club and will stay a strong club. The owner decides to sell the club, but he is selling a strong, solid club on the highest level.”

As it stands, Rudiger appears most likely to stay at Chelsea with Azpilicueta and Christensen being strongly linked with a switch to Barcelona.

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