French football expert Xavier Rivoire has exclusively revealed to clubcall.com that Chelsea target Michael Essien is set to stay at Lyon for a further 12 months, writes Steve Harrison.
The 22 year-old midfielder has generated interest from a number of clubs across Europe and it is has been widely reported that Chelsea were first to test Lyon's resolve on holding on to the player with a bid that the French champions rejected recently.
Rivoire told clubcall: "Jean-Michel Aulas, the director of football at Lyon, told us that Essien had just left his office and they had pretty much agreed a contract which will give the player a better deal.
"The director of football didn't say they had shaken hands on it but that Essien would probably stay for at least another year. That is what the people at Lyon are telling me.
"Lyon are desperate to keep hold of Essien, and Jean-Michel Aulas will not let him go unless there is big money on the table.''
''Chelsea have offered £20m but it will have to be more than that.''