Frank Lampard refused to be drawn on a potential move for Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha, saying his Chelsea team will do their business ‘behind closed doors’ and not in the media.
Lampard was asked about the player after his side once again failed to kill off an opponent, allowing Brighton back in to the first Premier League game of 2020; despite dominating the match for long periods they eventually drew 1-1.
Palace would be reluctant to part with a player they value at £80 million ($106m), but there are suggestions they may do so if they’re offered a player in exchange, with out-of-favour Blues striker Olivier Giroud mentioned.
Lampard said he hadn’t thought of such a swap deal involving for the France international forward, who has said he may leave in January and insisted his team would not do business in public.
“I wouldn’t talk about Zaha and the idea of that deal is something I have never even considered,” the former England man said after the game.
“As I say I won’t talk about Zaha because he is not a player of ours.”
“If we have to do business we will do it in the way we see fit to try and make us better and that’s behind closed doors as opposed to just announcing who we might want to bring in.”
One pundit believes it may take more than just Giroud and cash to prise Zaha from Selhurst Park.
Clinton Morrison, who starred in south London himself, thinks Palace would demand two forwards from Chelsea, and that Roy Hodgson’s team may need that many to ensure survival.
“The only way I can see Crystal Palace selling Wilfried Zaha to Chelsea is if they get Michy Batshuayi, Olivier Giroud and money,” he told Sky Sports.
“I cannot see Zaha leaving in January, I cannot see the Palace chairman letting him go, he’s still so important to the football club.
“Without a shadow he will be gone in the summer but, for now, I still see him staying in January because Palace aren’t safe yet. If they sold Zaha it would be a big struggle to stay up.”
Batshuayi played for the Eagles on loan last year, scoring five times in 11 games.