Chelsea are reportedly set to tell John Obi Mikel that this will be his last season at Stamford Bridge as they don’t intend on offering him a new deal.
The 29-year-old has been at the club for a decade after joining from Lyn Oslo in 2006, and has always been a consistent presence in the squad.
However, given that he hasn’t featured at all for Chelsea so far this season, it doesn’t appear as though he has a place in Antonio Conte’s future plans and the Evening Standard report that he will be informed that he will be allowed to leave when his current deal expires next summer.
With the likes of N’Golo Kante, Nemanja Matic and Nathaniel Chalobah ahead of him in the pecking order, it’s pretty tough to see how Mikel fits in and as a result he will be able to discuss terms with other clubs from January onwards.
Having amassed 378 appearances for the club while winning 10 major trophies during his spell at Stamford Bridge, it’s more than likely that he’ll be remembered fondly by Chelsea supporters after his departure.
According to the report, he may well have offers from Marseille, MLS, the Chinese Super League and the Middle East lined up in the summer, and so it doesn’t look as though he’ll have trouble finding a new team.
Nevertheless, it will be an emotional time for him to leave west London after so long, but it’s clear Conte is moving in a different direction and one that doesn’t involve the Nigerian international.