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Rivals Chelsea are encouraged by the lack of breakthrough on Conor Gallagher’s new contract as they prepare to fly out this summer, with the midfielder approaching the final year of his deal.

  • Chelsea star Conor Gallagher faces uncertain future at Stamford Bridge
  • Rival clubs have been buoyed by lack of progress in negotiations over a new contract
  • Is the North London Derby the best Premier League clash? Listen to It’s All Kicking Off! podcast

Chelsea are approaching a summer in which they could not only lose a leader in Thiago Silva, but also Conor Gallagher, with interested clubs buoyed by the lack of a breakthrough on a new deal.

Gallagher, 24, is set to enter the final year of his contract with the club he joined aged eight. Discussions about extending his stay have been ongoing for several months, but Chelsea insiders say the situation remains the same with five games left in the Premier League season.

Mauricio Pochettino wants his hard runner to stay, although the manager himself is unsure how much input he will be entitled to in the club’s transfer business this summer. Previous windows were largely managed by sporting directors Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart.

Chelsea insist their relationship with Gallagher is strong, but they have shown a willingness to sell him in the past and their rivals are set to melt away this summer.

That includes Tottenham, Chelsea’s opponents this Thursday whose style of play under Ange Postecoglou would suit Gallagher’s box-to-box qualities. Newcastle, Liverpool, West Ham, Everton, Brighton and Fulham have also been linked with the England international previously.

Chelsea's rivals are encouraged by the club's lack of progress on a new deal.

Rivals Chelsea are encouraged by the club’s lack of progress on a new deal.

The Blues midfielder has shown leadership in the face of adversity for his team this season.

The Blues midfielder has shown leadership in the face of adversity for his team this season.

However, Chelsea won’t let Gallagher leave on the cheap, even though his contract is about to expire.

Mail Sport spoke to an anonymous source from an interested club who revealed they were told a deal could be done for £40m last summer. Despite the reduction in his contract, they fear that Chelsea will demand even more after a season in which Gallagher demonstrated his talent.

Add to that Gallagher’s salary expectations – there is an argument that he should earn £150,000 a week – and it would be an expensive buy for any potential suitor.

For this reason, the source above says they are unlikely to pursue Gallagher seriously this summer, interestingly saying of Chelsea’s valuations: “We like him, but the numbers don’t add up. They pay too much, so they expect clubs to pay them too much.

Certainly, in Tottenham’s case, Chelsea would demand a higher price for Gallagher, as they would much prefer to sell to a club they do not view as a direct rival. Although this season is heading towards a disappointing end, Chelsea will once again be aiming for a top-four finish next campaign and do not want to help their competition this summer.

Speculation is rife that Chelsea are under pressure to sell players this summer in order to meet the Premier League’s profit and sustainability rules, although the club insists this is not a problem. The fact that Gallagher represents pure profit in the PSR balance sheet – because he was trained by the Chelsea academy – is a consideration that will be taken into account.

In an injury-plagued season, Gallagher’s body refused to break down, even though he covered more distance than any of his teammates. This reliability is another reason why Pochettino values ​​him so much, having handed him the captain’s armband in the absence of Reece James.

Gallagher celebrates scoring his side's second goal against Aston Villa in the 2-2 draw

Gallagher celebrates scoring his side’s second goal against Aston Villa in the 2-2 draw

Gallagher partnered Moises Caicedo in midfield at Aston Villa, with Enzo Fernandez ruled out for the rest of the season after undergoing groin surgery. Fernandez has played through pain for the past six months, using injections and medication to get through games.

Gallagher’s versatility has allowed him to fit seamlessly into this role, having generally been used as a number 10, with statistics indicating he is the best presser of the ball in the Premier League. He stole possession before Noni Madueke scored, then scored a sublime equalizer that saw Chelsea come back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Villa Park, once again underlining his importance.

If Gallagher leaves with Silva this summer, it will be difficult for the Chelsea dressing room who could have had a worse season without his leadership.

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