Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi has laughed off reported interest from Anderlecht ahead of the European transfer deadline, owing to his past with fierce Belgian rivals Standard Liege.
Behind Tammy Abraham and Olivier Giroud in the pecking order at Stamford Bridge, Batshuayi has only played six minutes of first team football so far this season.
His expected lack of chances of the course of the campaign had let to suggestions that the 25-year-old could at least temporarily move on with another loan away after spending time with Borussia Dortmund, Valencia and Crystal Palace since January 2018.
Anderlecht were linked with a move, but Batshuayi is set to stay at Chelsea and has taken to social media in comical fashion to suggest that the Brussels giants never stood a chance of signing him.
Responding to a tweet from France Football that Anderlecht are ‘trying everything’ to get him, Batshuayi posted an old picture of himself from back in his Standard Liege days with ‘LOL’ superimposed over his middle finger.
Anderlecht are Standard’s arch rivals and, although Batshuayi was born in Brussels rather than Liege and did spend a year in Anderlecht’s youth ranks, his loyalty is very much with Standard.
Batshuayi made the switch to Liege at the age of 15 and began his professional career there when he made his senior debut for Standard three years later. He scored 44 goals in 120 appearances for the club before Marseille came calling in 2014 and took him to France.
Joining Anderlecht would have meant playing under international colleague Vincent Kompany, who is player-manager in Brussels, albeit no longer on matchdays after a difficult start.
Batshuayi has even been supported in his snub of Anderlecht by former Standard teammate Axel Witsel, now with Borussia Dortmund, who tweeted in response, ‘Red one day, red every day’, in reference to Standard’s usual colours.
Batshuayi will be hoping to prove himself as a valuable option to Chelsea manager Frank Lampard, having started just 18 times for the club since arriving in west London three years ago.