Renato Sanches rejects Chelsea, Diego Costa heads to Milan
Bayern Munich youngster turns down loan deal, but wantaway striker is happy with temporary switch to Italy
Having sold Nemanja Matic to Manchester United on Monday for a cool £40m Chelsea have a locker going free in their dressing room but it doesn't look like it will be taken by Renato Sanches.
The London Evening Standard reports that the Blues "are struggling to convince" the Bayern Munich midfielder to join them on loan and boss Antonio Conte is now looking at other targets to round out his midfield.
Conte has been on the tail of the 19-year-old Sanches for a while and the Standard says that he broached the subject of a loan deal with Bayern coach Carlo Ancelotti after the two clubs met in a pre-season friendly in Singapore last month.
But apparently Sanches, who made only a handful of starts for the German giants last season after his £31.3m switch from Benfica 12 months ago, has serious reservations about joining Chelsea.
What are those reservations? The Standard says he is "concerned over the amount of playing time he will get at Stamford Bridge" because of the presence of N'Golo Kante and Tiemoue Bakayoko. Consequently a deal for the Portugal international looks unlikely and now reports from Germany suggest that Ancelotti is likely to give the teenager one more season to see if he comes good.
Another player unlikely to be wearing Chelsea blue next season is Diego Costa, and The Sun claims that AC Milan "are closing in on a loan deal" for the Spanish striker, one that would see him spend the first half of the season in Italy before joining Atletico Madrid in January.
Atletico can't buy players to play until the beginning of 2018 because of a Fifa ban, but that won't stop them indulging in a canny bit of business by agreeing a three-way deal that involves a four-month stay with AC Milan.