Shakhtar warn Chelsea: Willian not for sale
Published 13:21 23/01/12 By MirrorFootball
Chelsea have failed with a bid to sign Shakhtar Donetsk star Willian, according to the Ukrainian champions.
Blues boss Andre Villas-Boas all but ruled out a move for the 23-year-old Brazil midfielder after Saturday's Premier League goalless draw at Norwich.
But Shakhtar chief executive Sergei Palkin has claimed that he rejected a £16.7million offer from Chelsea, having last week declared he would be prepared to sell for £25million.
"We have received a bid from Chelsea for Willian valued at 20million euros, but he is not for sale," Palkin told Sky Sports News.
There was no comment from Chelsea, in line with their usual policy on transfer dealings.
Villas-Boas admitted after the Norwich game that Willian was "very interesting" but suggested he would not attempt to buy a player who was cup-tied in the Champions League.
The Chelsea manager, who also recently ruled out a move for Lille's Eden Hazard, added: "I don't think we should go for players who cannot be involved in all the competitions.
"If a good opportunity arises, we could study it, but at the moment we are very satisfied."
Willian has expressed a desire to move to the Premier League, according to Palkin, who admitted last week he would be prepared to do business with Chelsea for the right price.
He told www.terrikon.com: "If a big club offers serious money for our player, we will always consider its proposal.
"In our case, Willian expressed his desire to test himself in the Premier League.
"Willian's contract involves a minimum release clause of 35million euros.
"But we met Willian halfway and are ready to let him go for 30 million.
"It is important to understand that today we are talking about Chelsea's desire to buy Willian, but not Shakhtar's desire to sell him. We also need this player."
He added of Chelsea's bid: "When Willian was 19 years old, we paid for him almost the same amount of money.
"What is the point of such a deal then?"
Meanwhile, Frank Lampard was today all but ruled out of Chelsea's FA Cup clash with QPR after scans showed he had suffered a calf tear.
The midfielder was forced off in the first half at Carrow Road and looks certain to miss this weekend's trip to Loftus Road.
However, he was expected to fly out to Mallorca to join the squad on their warmer-weather training camp.
The 33-year-old's tear is thought to be minor but it remains to be seen whether he recovers in time for next Tuesday's trip to Swansea.