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 By Ben Gladwell

Juventus' Leonardo Bonucci: Links to Chelsea are 'just gossip'

Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci says rumours he is set to join Chelsea are purely media speculation.

Bonucci, 30, has been linked with a move to London to join Antonio Conte, his former coach for both club and country.

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola is also a well-known admirer of the Italy international, but Bonucci has four years left to run on his contract in Turin.

His agent is reported to have been spotted in London, but when asked about that, Bonucci told reporters: "It's just gossip from you."

Leonardo Bonucci has won six Serie A titles with Juventus.

Chelsea are reported to be willing to offer as much as €55 million for Bonucci, who agreed new terms with the Bianconeri only last December, when he was already being linked with a move to the Premier League.

After a spat with Juve coach Massimiliano Allegri earlier this year, he ruled out leaving Turin before the end of his contract in 2021.

"I don't know if Allegri will move to the Premier League, but I am going to be a part of this club until 2021," Bonucci said in March. "It is therefore up to the club if they want to keep me or send me away, but I hope to honour my contract."

However, the following month he suggested that he could still be open to a move to England, saying the Premier League "fascinates" him and that Pep Guardiola's praise was "nice."

Meanwhile, teammate Giorgio Chiellini backed Bonucci to stay with Juve next season.

"I'll bet anything you want on Leo staying at Juve," Tuttosport reports Chiellini as saying. "We can't deprive ourselves of a player like him. I'm certain he's still going to be one of the pillars of Juve."

Ben Gladwell reports on Serie A, the Italian national team and the Bundesliga for ESPN FC, UEFA and the Press Association. @UEFAcomBenG.

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