Newcastle United’s star midfielder Cheick Tiote has dismissed speculation he is planning a move to Chelsea, telling The Journal his friendship with Chelsea star Didier Drogba is nothing to do with a secret transfer deal.
“We talk all of the time, but he has never said come and join me at Chelsea,” the 24-year-old said.
“I have seen that Chelsea might be interested and that I could go there to join him there.”
But Tiote is adamant that he is not interested in joining the Blues, even if they can offer European qualification to sweeten the deal.
“I enjoy it here [at Newcastle]. The club has good ambitions. I would not have signed if I did not think the club had a bright future,” he said.
Tiote signed a contract with Newcastle in mid February keeping him at the Toon until 2016/17, but speculation is still rife that he might be interested in moving to Chelsea. After watching Newcastle striker Andy Carroll move to Liverpool in January, fans are no doubt worried the club would sell Tiote for the right price.
But Tiote insists Ivory Coast team mate Drogba is encouraging him to stay at Newcastle, and he plans on the Toon being his home for the next few years at least.
“When I signed my new contract, [Didier] rang to congratulate me. He always gives me advice. He told me to keep working and not to get carried away with what has happened. It is good to talk to him,” Tiote said.
“He is such a big player, I am very honoured that he wants to talk to me all of the time and help me. He wants the best for me.”
Tiote joked, “why can’t he come here to join me at Newcastle!