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Chelsea Transfer News: Luke Shaw Blow Dealt by Southampton

Chelsea's Oscar, right, competes with Southampton's Luke Shaw during their English Premier League soccer match at Stamford Bridge, London, Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
Sang Tan/Associated Press
Ravin SampatCorrespondent IIJanuary 17, 2014

Southampton have dealt title chasers Chelsea a significant blow in their hopes of signing in-form full-back Luke Shaw after chairman Katharina Liebherr released a statement on Southampton’s website quelling speculation that players will be allowed to leave St Mary’s in the January transfer window:

The Club has no plans to sell any of the squad during the January transfer window. The manager and the team have my full support.

Chelsea were interested in Luke Shaw, reported Jeremy Wilson and Jason Burt of the Telegraph, who they say is valued at £20 million.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 29:  Luke Shaw of Southampton is tackled by Steven Naismith of Everton during the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and Southampton at Goodison Park on December 29, 2013 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Paul Thom
Paul Thomas/Getty Images

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 06:  Nicola Cortese, Executive Chairman of Southampton applauds prior to the Barclays Premier League match between Southampton and Swansea City at St Mary's Stadium on October 6, 2013 in Southampton, England.  (Photo by Rich
Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

An exodus was expected at St Mary’s after the resignation of chairman Nicola Cortese on Wednesday, throwing the club into a "crisis," described Charles Perrin of the Express.

But Liebherr’s statement will bring relief to Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino after he was described as being “in shock," per Wilson and Burt.

Sang Tan/Associated Press

In Thursday’s pre-match press conference, Pochettino also reiterated Liebherr’s statement that Southampton were not a selling club:

I want to make something very clear. No one is for sale at Southampton. No one. My belief has not changed from a week ago. No player that I don’t want to leave will leave this club.

Chelsea were interested in Shaw as a long-term replacement for Ashley Cole, reported the Telegraph's Mark OgdenThe England international has seen his normally guaranteed place as Chelsea's left-back diminish this season. 

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 27:  Ashley Cole of Chelsea and Samir Nasri of Manchester City battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on October 27, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Jose Mourinho has preferred playing Spanish right-back Cesar Azpilicueta in Cole’s position, but a long-term replacement for the former Arsenal man, like Shaw, has been targeted. 

According to The Metro, Mourinho has been given the "green light" on a £30 million move for the future England left-back.

Cole was dropped in December when Chelsea played Arsenal at the Emirates when the England left-back was pictured attending the Gunners’ Christmas party just days before the match, reported Gerry Cox of the Telegraph.

Scott Heppell/Associated Press

Mourinho claimed that Azpilicueta was playing better than Cole at the time and deserved to be in the team, reported David Woods of the Daily Star, before the 0-0 draw at the Emirates:

In this moment, Azpi’s playing better. He is showing me he’s physically better, very strong. I don’t remember one defensive positional mistake from Azpi.

Cole has also played 13 league games this season and has been an unused substitute 11 times already, ESPN stats show.

HULL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 11:  Ashley Cole of Chelsea and Ahmed Elmohamady of Hull City battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between Hull City and Chelsea at KC Stadium on January 11, 2014 in Hull, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffi
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Since returning to the Bridge, Mourinho has been looking to implement his own identity over Chelsea in his second tenure at the club. The potential signing of the likes of Shaw is all part of the Portuguese manager's long-term plans to make Chelsea a competitive force in the Premier League and Europe.

In the summer, he tried to sign Wayne Rooney from Manchester United, per the BBC's Phil McNulty, and will continue to chase him this summer, says the Daily Mail's Bob Cass.

Jon Super/Associated Press

This week, the Blues announced the arrival of Nemanja Matic from Benfica, which will see a changing of the guard in midfield as Frank Lampard will be given less opportunities with the Serbian's arrival.

The Blues won't be the only club alerted by the statement from Liebherr. Manchester United manager David Moyes identified the 18-year-old full-back as a long-term replacement for Patrice Evra, per Ogden. 

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