In a bit of logical development after months and months of just courting the issue, Chelsea and Willian (or, to be more accurate, Willian’s representatives) are “currently in talks” over a new contract for the 6.5-year Chelsea veteran — and not a moment too soon as the 31-year-old’s contract is up at the end of the season and he will be free to discuss terms with Barcelona (or some other non-Premier League team) in January.
That’s the word from Goal’s Nizaar Kinsella, who reaffirms that the main sticking point in these negotiations will be the length of contract, with Chelsea presumably only willing to offer the standard one-year extension for a player over 30, while Willian probably preferring to get the same exception as was afforded to his good friend David Luiz last season, and getting a two-year deal from the club. Unfortunately for Willian, David Luiz’s subsequent absconding to Arsenal is unlikely to have helped that cause.
Willian, who’s made it pretty clear how happy he is these days and how much he’d like to keep playing for the club, has been one of Chelsea’s most consistent performers this season, and has put his experience to good effect as well in leading a youthful Chelsea side by example on and off the pitch. In Chelsea’s last game before the international break, against Crystal Palace, he even donned the captain’s armband as Reece James was preferred to César Azpilicueta and Jorginho was suspended.
It would be quite surprising at this point if we weren’t able to work out a new contract, if for no other reason than to not let him leave for free in the summer.