Wesley Fofana ‘not for sale’ amid Chelsea talk but Brendan Rodgers prepared to bench him

Date published: Thursday 18th August 2022 2:22 - Sarah Winterburn

Brendan Rodgers shakes the hand of Chelsea target Wesley Fofana

Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers says he expects Wesley Fofana to still be at the club next month despite claims that the Frenchman has agreed personal terms with the Blues.

The defender has been the subject of two bids from Chelsea but both were rejected and nothing fresh has arrived in the last fortnight.

Leicester are said to want £85m for French Under-21 international Fofana.

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Speaking ahead of Saturday’s clash with Southampton, Rodgers insisted that Fofana is not for sale.

“I don’t think so far ahead, the idea is that he is a Leicester City player,” he said.

“He is not for sale, the club have made that clear, unless anything changes he will still be here.

“Currently at this moment there is nothing new and nothing has changed from when we last spoke.”

There might be nothing new from Rodgers’ end but reports persist that not only do Chelsea still want Fofana, but that the player himself is desperate to join the Champions League club.

Rodgers did add that he was “100% prepared” to take Fofana out of his starting line-up if he was not in the right frame of mind to play.

“We’ve spoken numbers of times about the situation. We’ve had private conversations. Our communication is normal.

“It’s a challenge for any player, when the window is open and there is lots of noise, especially for a young player.

“That’s why we’re here, to help him and educate him and let him deal with all of these rumours. The focus is on the weekend.

Asked if it was tricky as a manager, Rodgers said: “There’s no denying it. It’s always a tricky period.

“Your season is starting, you’re trying to get focused, and you spend your summer creating this powerful collective unit, and then there is lots of speculation.

“These are young guys and it’s the first time they have experienced this for some of them. There can be disruption. The idea is to keep the group focused. The minute the window ends, it all ends.”

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano claims the Leicester centre-back has ‘agreed personal terms’ with the Blues with ‘the contract ready in case the two clubs find an agreement’.

He added: ‘Chelsea are preparing a new bid as they want Fofana as priority target. Leicester insist on their position. Tough one, but still open.’

Leicester have made no outfield signings this summer and Rodgers is understandably frustrated, saying: “It’s one where I’ve said before. Every manager wants to strengthen.

“My experience tells me you have to concentrate on what you have, a wonderful group that want to get better. If we get some luck with no injuries, then we can still have a really good season.”

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