Sarri 'very confident' Willian set for Chelsea stay

Willian has been strongly linked with a move away from Chelsea in the close-season, but Maurizio Sarri expects him to stay at the club.

Chelsea attacker Willian has been strongly linked with a move away from Chelsea.   -  Getty Images

Maurizio Sarri is "very confident" Willian will remain at Chelsea and insists there is no problem with the Brazilian after he returned late from his holiday.

Although Chelsea endured a disappointing campaign last term, Willian was regularly a standout performer and was named Players' Player of the Year for a second time by his team-mates.

He has been a constant subject of speculation since, however, with Barcelona and Manchester United both credited with an interest in him.

Reports even suggested Chelsea was open to selling him given he turns 30 next week, his late return from a post-World Cup holiday doing little to ease the tension.

Sarri made it abundantly clear earlier in the week that he was unimpressed by Willian's late arrival, though after having a discussion with the Brazilian, the air has been cleared and the coach expects his attacker to stay.

When asked in Friday's news conference ahead of the Community Shield if he thinks Willian will remain, Sarri said: "Yes, I do. I'm very confident.

"I spoke yesterday with him about him being late, not his future. It was a very positive conversation and I am very happy about it. There is no Willian problem."

But Sarri seemed less certain about the future of goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who reportedly wants out with just a year left on his contract.

Courtois is said to be angling for a move to Real Madrid to be closer to his children, who live in the Spanish capital following his spell with Atletico Madrid, but Sarri could not offer supporters much certainty.

"Courtois is the goalkeeper of the club, I don't know in the future," Sarri said. "It depends on the club, and especially on him I think. I hope Courtois will be our goalkeeper."

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