Rumoured Chelsea FC target Alexis Sanchez will be remaining at Udinese until at least this summer, according to the Serie A club's coach, Francesco Guidolin. Sanchez, who starred at the world cup and typically features at right wing for Udinese, has been heavily linked to a number of teams, including heavyweights Inter Milan and Barcelona. He wouldn't have come cheaply (ESPN put Chelsea's putative bid at £26M, far higher than his supposed £17M buyout clause) although many would have argued that his ability to blow past defenders and stretch the play on the flanks would have made him invaluable. Alas, it's not to be (maybe?), thanks to what appears to be the weakest denial of all time:
The club have reiterated that Sanchez will remain at Udinese until the end of the season and I have no doubts on this matter. Of course, if a tempting offer would arrive it would be right for the club to evaluate it but I believe that Alexis can still grow from here on until the end of the season if he stayed with us.
-Francesco Guidolin. Source: Italian TV station Rai Due via ESPN.
So, Sanchez won't leave but they'll listen to and evaluate offers ... for him to leave. Alright. We also go from 'Sanchez will remain at Udinese to believing that Sanchez can still grow if he stays. Obviously I'm not privy to the actual interview, but that sure seems like backsliding to me. And then there's this.
After that, he is destined, considering the quality he has shown for some time, to join a top club.
Ok, so now they're standing in the way of fate. Destiny doesn't care about your Coppa Italia run, Mr. Guidolin. Don't mess with fate. All in all, I'm thinking that this denial doesn't actually change a thing, despite all the headlines. Even if he's going nowhere now - and the more I look at those quotes the less forceful they are about him not leaving in January they seem - he's almost certainly moving on in the summer.