CHELSEA legend Joe Cole has urged his former club to make a move for World Cup-winning keeper Emiliano Martinez after Edouard Mendy snubbed a new contract.
SunSport exclusively revealed that Champions League, Super Cup and Club World Cup winner Mendy turned down fresh terms because Chelsea are not showing him enough “respect” over wages.
The Senegalese keeper, 30, earns around £100,000-a-week and wants parity with his Blues rival Kepa Arrizabalaga who picks up almost twice that.
Sources claim Chelsea bosses have even withdrawn their initial offer of a long-term deal as they play hardball with the negotiations — and now there is a stand-off.
And so Chelsea legend Cole has recommended Aston Villa goalkeeper, Martinez, who has just come off the back of a World Cup win with Argentina, should Mendy leave.
Martinez, 30, played a pivotal role in Argentina’s third-ever world title win, saving penalties in shootouts against Holland and finalists France.
He also picked up the Golden Glove.
The former England international told the All to Play For podcast: “Martinez for me.
“I watched him, he didn’t have that many shots to face because they were so good in front of him, but you know what he is good at?
“Crossing, commanding, and you know he’s connected to his back four.
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“In the big moments, he delivered.
“If I’m Chelsea I am tabling a bid for him now. I think he was outstanding.”
Blues star Mendy still has two and a half years left on his contract but Italian champions AC Milan are closely monitoring the situation — as are French sides Nice and Monaco.
Martinez, meanwhile, is tied down at Villa Park until the summer of 2027.
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