Villarreal target Chelsea's Florent Malouda

21 January 2009 09:47
The Frenchman, who move to Stamford Bridge from Lyon in 2007 for £13.5m, has failed to establish himself as a first-team regular, despite showing early promise when he first arrived in England.

Jose Mourinho, Avram Grant and now Luis Felipe Scolari have all lost patience with the 28-year-old.

Now, with almost two weeks remaining of the transfer window, Villarreal are set to offer Malouda a route out.

The main stumbling block will be the price, according to the Mirror

. Chelsea want to recoup as much of the £13.5m they paid for Malouda, meaning Villarreal's £9m valuation falls some way short.

Meanwhile, Scolari has targeted Wigan winger Antonio Valencia as a replacement for injured Joe Cole.

Scolari regards Valencia as an obvious replacement for Cole, because of his Premier League experience, but concerns are that the Chelsea hierarchy are not willing to commit the £12m-plus fee that would be required.

Chelsea have also been told that Benfica winger Angel Di Maria has a buyout clause in his contract set at £27m, after the devaluation in the pound.

That price would rule out any chance of Chelsea buying the player, as he would not be an automatic choice in the starting XI.

Source: Telegraph