Napoli star Gonzalo Higuain reportedly turned down the chance to join Chelsea last month because he didn’t want to be second choice at Stamford Bridge.
According to The Daily Mail, the Argentine international was approached by the Blues who were willing to make a £40m bid for his services as they sounded out a possible switch to the Premier League.
However, with interim boss Guus Hiddink unable to guarantee him first-team football every week given the presence of Diego Costa, the move reportedly collapsed.
It is also claimed that no formal bid was made to the Italian giants who would in all probability have dismissed the offer immediately, and it is unclear as to how much truth is behind the approach to Higuain directly.
The former Real Madrid star has been in fine form this season, scoring 24 goals in 24 league games to help the Partenopei to the top of the table ahead of their Scudetto showdown with Juventus on Saturday night.
Nevertheless, Chelsea have been buoyed by Costa’s improved form since the arrival of Hiddink, as the Spanish striker had struggled during the opening months of the season under former boss Jose Mourinho.
Having scored seven goals since the Portuguese coach’s departure, it is in stark contrast to the four goals he managed in 21 appearances prior to his exit.
Chelsea moved to bring in former AC Milan ace Alexandre Pato in the January transfer window to add depth to the squad, with the likes of Radamel Falcao and Loic Remy unable to stay fit and provide an alternative option on a consistent basis.