Lampard coy on Mendy as Batshuayi prepares for Palace return

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard

Boss Frank Lampard has refused to confirm Chelsea are trying to sign Senegal international goalkeeper Edouard Mendy.

But Lampard said talks are ongoing over a deal for Michy Batshuayi to return to Crystal Palace on loan.

Defender Fikayo Tomori, meanwhile, is expected to join Everton on a season’s loan.

Lampard said the Mendy speculation is “a situation I don’t want to be drawn into”.

“Mendy is a Rennes player so it’s a non-starter for me to talk about,” he added.

“With Michy it is an ongoing situation and it is not clear or confirmed yet, but we are all aware that it is a conversation is happening.

“With Fikayo I am not aware of those conversations getting to any point where I am going to be talking to you about them.

“But Fik trained with us today and is in contention for the Brighton game and that is where we are at.”

Batshauyi is set to sign a new Chelsea contract before completing his latest loan move.

The striker’s current contract is due to expire next year and Chelsea are extending it in order to avoid the prospect of him leaving on a free transfer.

Batshuayi, 26, scored twice for Belgium against Iceland on Tuesday evening.

He later told Belgian broadcaster RTBF that reports he was set to extend his contract and return to Palace were “on the right track” and that he felt he needed to play first-team football.

Batshuayi has been unable to establish himself as a first-team regular at Chelsea since being signed from Marseille in 2016.

He has previously been on loan at Palace, as well as Valencia and Borussia Dortmund.

Chelsea: Michy Batshuayi
Batshuayi is set to return to south London

Batshuayi was at Palace during the second half of the 2018-19 season, making 13 appearances and scoring six goals for the Eagles.

Palace have long been keen to take him back to Selhurst Park.

The deal will mean Palace will have to abandon plans to sign youngster Conor Gallagher on loan from the Blues.

They were close to taking Gallagher on a season-long deal but Premier League rules mean clubs can only have one player from another top-flight club at any one time.

West Brom have shown an interest in Gallagher, who last season had loan spells at Charlton and Swansea.