Chelsea defender David Luiz was last night on the verge of a £50million move to Paris St Germain as uncertainty continued to surround the future of record goalscorer Frank Lampard.
Brazil international Luiz is close to a move to Paris for a fee which would be a world record for a defender.
Meanwhile, Lampard, who is 36 in June, appeared on the Premier League’s list of released players alongside striker Samuel Eto’o and left-back Ashley Cole as their contracts expire on June 30.
Lampard’s appearance on the list does not mean his departure is inevitable, although Chelsea are still to clarify if the midfielder, who moved to Stamford Bridge in June 2001, will stay or move on. Cole has suggested he is likely to leave Chelsea, while Eto’o is poised to move on at the end of his one-season deal.
Lampard has scored a club record 209 Chelsea goals in 646 appearances since his switch from West Ham, including the two goals at Bolton which secured the 2004/2005 Premier League title. That was Chelsea’s first championship for 50 years and began the most successful period in the club’s history.
Eto’o netted 12 times in 35 appearances last term following his move from Anzhi Makhachkala.
Cole has hinted his future lies away from Stamford Bridge after eight years after falling down the pecking order this term.
The former Arsenal left-back, who retired from England duty after winning 107 caps but being overlooked for the World Cup squad, has been linked with moves abroad and to Manchester United and Liverpool.
Luiz’s departure after three-and-a-half seasons at Stamford Bridge is close, with PSG in advanced negotiations after appearing to beat Barcelona and Bayern Munich to his signature.
The 27-year-old joined Chelsea from Benfica in January 2011 and has two years remaining on his five-and-a-half-year deal.
Luiz has made 143 appearances, 34 of them last season, scoring 12 goals.