Report: Chelsea Reject Barcelona Approach for Andreas Christensen

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist INovember 30, 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 29: Andreas Christensen of Chelsea in action during the UEFA Europa League Group L match between Chelsea and PAOK at Stamford Bridge on November 29, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Michael Regan/Getty Images

Chelsea have reportedly rejected an approach from Barcelona to sign defender Andreas Christensen in the January transfer window.

According to Alex Richards at the Mirror, Chelsea director Marina Granovskaia turned down the Spanish champions and has no intention of losing the centre-back in January.

Christensen has struggled for game time this season. He is yet to make a single Premier League appearance under Maurizio Sarri, who has preferred Antonio Rudiger and David Luiz as his centre-backs.

The Dane has had to settle for playing time in the cup competitions. He's started all five of Chelsea's UEFA Europa League matches and both Carabao Cup ties.

Goal's Nizaar Kinsella highlighted how he impressed in Thursday's 4-0 win over PAOK Salonika:

Nizaar Kinsella @NizaarKinsella

Christensen won 80% of his duels, regained possession 11 times and intercepted twice. Most of any Chelsea player in those areas, got on the ball a lot with 87 passes. Fabregas way out ahead of him with 127 though. #CFC #UEL #CFCvPAOK

The 22-year-old has spoken of his frustration at his current situation, per Sky Sports News, and was also asked if he envisaged a future away from Stamford Bridge:

"Difficult question. No, I don't think so. 

"Things are different from last season. I played a lot of games [last season] but this season it hasn't been like that. It's always difficult for a player, but we'll see what happens.

"If you asked every player that's not playing if they're happy, they're going to say no. Everyone wants to play."

Christensen's father and agent Sten had previously suggested the defender could look for a move away:

Goal @goal

🗣 Andreas Christensen's dad: “If his situation doesn’t change around Christmas, we’ll obviously schedule a chat with Chelsea. For me it’s not a loan again. Either it’s Chelsea or else he needs to leave." Maurizio Sarri: https://t.co/7r2t5BrkYm

Meanwhile, Barcelona have injury problems in defence. Samuel Umtiti is set for another spell on the sidelines due to knee trouble and will head to Qatar for treatment, per the club's official website.

Sports journalist Richard Martin said he could be out until 2019:

Richard Martin @Rich9908

Samuel Umtiti will undergo "conservative treatment" on his left knee, Barça say, but to do that he will have to go to Qatar. Will have the treatment for "the next few weeks" so out until early 2019 you'd imagine.

Thomas Vermaelen is also sidelined with a hamstring injury. He could make his return in Barcelona's Copa del Rey second leg against Cultural Leonesa on Wednesday, per Catalunya Radio (h/t Sport).

Barcelona's only fit senior centre-backs are Gerard Pique and summer signing Clement Lenglet. Should Umtiti's fitness problems continue, Barcelona may be forced into the market in January to add defensive cover.