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César Azpilicueta contract extension ‘has kicked in’ automatically — report

The Giroud move

Lille OSC v Chelsea FC: Round Of Sixteen Leg Two - UEFA Champions League Photo by Catherine Steenkeste/Getty Images

Reports emerged some weeks ago of Chelsea having a potential extension built into César Azpilicueta’s (previously, as it turns out) expiring contract, and it looks like that has indeed been the case, with the Telegraph’s Matt Law confirming earlier reports from Spain that the unilateral option has now “kicked in”.

It’s not specified what the exact condition was for the club to be able to exercise the option (category: yes; exact number: no), but that’s immaterial really since it was at least agreed, if not already done before the sanctions placed on Roman Abramovich and, in turn, Chelsea, and thus able to be implemented.

Spanish media of course remain very convinced that Azpilicueta will eventually end up at Barcelona before next season, just as they have been since the turn of the year — “yes or yes” — and Law also very much leaves open that possibility.

Basically, it’s the Olivier Giroud situation from last year, whose contract was also unilaterally extended before being allowed to join AC Milan for a token fee — though given Azpi’s legendary status at the club, we possibly wouldn’t even charge a penny.