Managerless Chelsea have been handed a welcome boost with the news that Michael Essien has no intention of leaving the club.
Essien, 28, was signed for £24 million from Lyon during Jose Mourinho's rein in west London and has been a member of two Barclays Premier League title winning sides, as well as lifting three FA Cups.
Reports have suggested the midfield enforcer is a target for former Blues' boss and Real Madrid incumbent Mourinho, but Essien is more than happy to stay at Stamford Bridge.
"He regularly has Jose Mourinho on the phone because they know each other well and have got on with each other since Jose was in charge of Chelsea," said the Ghanian's agent, Fabien Piveteau.
"But Real Madrid has never really appealed to him. Michael will stay at Chelsea, where he has another four years left on his contract.
"He's very happy there, in a great city and a very good club which comes up against very good teams week in, week out."
Meanwhile, Chelsea's pursuit of a successor to Carlo Ancelotti appears to be nearing a conclusion after chief executive Ron Gourlay confirmed an announcement will be made in the coming weeks.
Turkey manager Guus Hiddink - who spent a temporary spell in charge at the Bridge in 2009 - is expected to be the man tasked with ensuring silverware returns to the club next season.