Conte 'doesn't think' Chelsea has pursued Sanchez

Antonio Conte does not believe the recent talk of Chelsea trying to hijack Manchester United's move to sign Alexis Sanchez.

Alexis Sanchez's potential move away from Arsenal continues to dominate the transfer headlines.   -  Getty Images

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte does not believe the club has been trying to sign Alexis Sanchez.

Sanchez appears poised to leave Arsenal and join Manchester United, having until recently been expected to sign for Manchester City.

However, speculation has suggested Chelsea has interest in hijacking that deal to add the Chile forward to a squad that has failed to score in each of the last three games.

Read: Mkhitaryan key to United-Sanchez deal, claims Raiola

But asked in a media conference ahead of Chelsea's FA Cup third-round replay with Norwich City if the club had been pursuing Sanchez, Conte replied: "I don't know but I don't think so."

Pressed for his general view on the transfer window, in which Chelsea has added midfielder Ross Barkley from Everton, Conte remained consistent in refusing to offer an opinion.

"I refer to the top of the club. I don't want to give my opinion about the transfer market," he added.

Barkley is ineligible to face Norwich on Wednesday but Conte is pleased with how the England midfielder has trained since his arrival.

"We are preparing a friendly game for him during this week, and then we will see his physical condition," the Italian said. "But I'm very happy for his commitment and physical condition. He could be ready for the next game, or for the next game."

Striker Michy Batshuayi has been linked with a loan move to Sevilla, but Conte indicated talk of a switch being close is false.

Conte explained: "Michy Batshuayi is Chelsea's player and he's in our squad. Tomorrow he has to play. And then, I think, this is the truth until now.

"He's Chelsea's player and he's having this possibility to show he deserves to play for Chelsea. Now, this is the reality. This is the truth. Then, in the future, I don't know what will happen. The final decision is for the club, not for me.”

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