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Mourinho: Salah "can't leave"


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Chelsea manager José Mourinho has ruled out talk of an exit for Egyptian international Mohamed Salah in the January transfer window.

Salah, who had made only three starts for the Blues this season, only arrived in January 2014 alongside Nemanja Matic and Kurt Zouma as part of Mourinho's plans for long-term rebuilding.

The former Basel man, who starred in the Swiss club's 2-1 defeat of the Blues at Stamford Bridge last season, has found opportunities hard to come by considering the form of Willian and Eden Hazard, and is behind Andre Schurrle and even midfielder Ramires and striker Loic Remy in the pecking order for a place out wide.

Widespread media reports had indicated that the Egyptian winger would be set for a loan move this month, with Roma the most likely destination.

Besiktas had been considered the favourites to capture Salah, but The Mirror yesterday reported that Italian giants Roma have entered the negotiations with an immediate loan offer, and the potential for a sale in the summer.

However, Mourinho, speaking after Chelsea's 5-0 romp over Swansea, said there was next to no chance of Salah leaving.

"He can't leave", began Mourinho. ""Didier Drogba was ill, Cesar Azpilicueta injured. I have a short squad. For Salah to leave we need someone to come".

Mourinho had only 20 fit players to choose from for Saturday's match day squad, and even considering the side's lucky escape from any serious injuries thus far this season, Mourinho is cautious should a bout of ailments cripple his small squad.

"I don't think we are going to let Salah go on loan. If that happened we would have to spend money to bring someone else in, so I don't think he is going."

Mourinho has already explicitly stated there would be no new arrivals this month in an interview in December, but that has not stopped the Blues from being linked with a number of reinforcements.

Alvaro Arebloa, a favourite of Mourinho's during his time at Real Madrid, has been touted for a switch to Stamford Bridge to offer cover to Branislav Ivanovic in the right-back spot, whilst young Internazionale striker Mauro Icardi is allegedly the subject of a £30 million offer from the Blues.

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