Chelsea Transfer News: Sarri wants Kovacic to be signed permanently
What is the story?
The former Napoli manager also revealed that the club don't have any plans to sign an alternative to midfielder Jorginho.
In case you didn't know...
Chelsea's current midfield options include Jorginho, N'Golo Kante, Ross Barkley, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Danny Drinkwater and Kovacic.
During the January transfer window, Cesc Fabregas left Chelsea to join French side AS Monaco. The void of an experienced general at the heart of Chelsea's midfield has been fulfilled by Kovacic's impressive performances.
Although the Croatian, who joined Chelsea on loan from Real Madrid last summer, has managed only two assists from his 28 Premier League appearances, Sarri wants him permanently because of his tremendous work-rate and game reading abilities.
The heart of the matter...
In the pre-match news conference, ahead of his side's meeting with West Ham, Sarri said,
"You know very well that, in that position, we have some problems because we have only Jorginho."
"In my opinion, Kovacic could become a very good central midfielder. Of course he is not a defensive midfielder but, as you know, in that position I prefer a very technical player. For us it's very important for us to have big quality in that position. Big quality not for the last pass, but big quality in terms of moving the ball."
When he was asked whether he would like to bring a new face to play the role, he replied,
"No, I want to try with Kovacic. He is only on loan, of course. I'd like very much that Kovacic will stay with us."
Then he went on to praise former Chelsea academy player Declan Rice, who is currently having a stellar season at West Ham.
"I think he's a very good player, very good in the defensive phase because he's very able to recover the ball"
"He usually plays very close to the defensive line and, in the first match against West Ham, he was really a very big problem for us."
What is next?
Chelsea host West Ham in their next Premier League fixture on Monday night and Kovacic could start the match for the Blues, who are currently fifth in the Premier League table.