No Gonzalo Higuain offer from Chelsea, says AC Milan's Leonardo

Leonardo: "It is difficult to manage a striker when he doesn't score."

Gonzalo Higuain
Image: Gonzalo Higuain is currently on a season-long loan at AC Milan from Juventus

Chelsea have not made an offer for Gonzalo Higuain ahead of the January transfer window, says AC Milan's sporting director Leonardo.

The 31-year-old Argentine striker, who has scored just five Serie A goals this season, is wanted by the Blues as part of a swap deal for Alvaro Morata, according to Sky in Italy.

It is understood Maurizio Sarri has huge respect for Higuain, who he worked with at Napoli and was interested in bringing to Chelsea in the summer.

Maurizio Sarri worked with Gonzalo Higuain at Napoli
Image: Higuain scored 36 goals in 35 games in the 2015/16 Serie A season

Higuain is currently on a season-long loan at the San Siro from Juventus after AC Milan agreed an €18m (£16m) fee with a further €36m (£32m) due should they wish to sign the player permanently at the end of the current campaign.

The money spent on the loan deal means that any club wishing to sign Higuain in January would have to negotiate with both his current club, AC Milan, and parent club, Juventus.

Gonzalo Higuain celebrates his goal during the Serie A match between Inter Milan and Juventus at San Siro Stadium on April 28, 2018
Image: Higuain scored 55 goals in 105 games for Juventus in all competitions

"It is difficult to manage a striker when he doesn't score," Leonardo said. "Higuain must find the real himself, he is living in a different situation for him, he left Juventus and he is here on loan. He is very important for us and he knows it.

"We haven't received any offer from Chelsea - no one has asked us for him and he didn't ask to leave. Anyway, at AC Milan we keep only the players who want to stay here."

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Milan head coach Gennaro Gattuso believes Higuain will stay at AC Milan, calling on the striker to rediscover the prolific goalscoring form that he had with Napoli and Juventus.

Gattuso said: "I want to see the Higuain of the second half against Frosinone. That is the real Higuain, always dangerous, who easily dribbled past the opponents, who had a couple of chances to score.

"Every day I hear people saying that Sarri or someone else called Higuain. I think he will stay, if he won't it will mean I was wrong. My opinion, my feelings are based on what he said to me. My impression is he will stay here."

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