Chelsea outcast Drinkwater ‘could reunite with old boss Ranieri at Sampdoria’
Chelsea outcast Danny Drinkwater could be about to reunite with Claudio Ranieri at Serie A side Sampdoria.
The former Leicester midfielder, who won the Premier League with Ranieri during the 2015-16 season with the Foxes, is out of favour at Stamford Bridge.
According to Il Secolo XIX newspaper, an intermediary has contacted Sampdoria to ask if they are interested in signing Drinkwater, who has managed six appearances for the Blues in the last two seasons.
The England international, 30, has recently revealed he is seeing a sports psychologist in a bid to jump-start his career and opened up on the extraordinary off-field incidents that have plagued his career over the last two years.
Drinkwater, who has been spent time on loan at Burnley and Aston Villa in recent seasons, has been marginalised at Chelsea and is looking to leave the club either on loan or on permanent terms in the present transfer window.
But Premier League clubs may feel tentative about approaching the man who has three England caps after recent run-ins involving drink-driving, headbutting Jota on loan at Aston Villa and the victim of a nightclub attack.
‘I know my Chelsea move hasn’t worked out how anybody would have wanted and I’ve made mistakes, but it’s not as simple as me just not playing football or picking up a wage,’ Drinkwater told The Telegraph. ‘Money doesn’t solve anything. The pay cheque doesn’t really help at all, you don’t even think about money.’
Drinkwater went on loan to Villa in the second half of last season and admitted his fitness was lacking due to so much time without first team football. But his frustration turned to anger and in training, he headbutted team-mate Jota.
‘I apologised straight away and I had to go home,’ Drinkwater said. ‘I texted him straight after to apologise and take full responsibility. I Google translated it into Spanish as well to make sure he’d understand.’
Earlier in the 2019-20 season, Drinkwater was on loan at Burnley but only played twice. Shortly after joining, Drinkwater was attacked in a club he visited during an international break.
‘Someone said I had tried to chat up some footballer’s girlfriend, but that just wasn’t the case. I got jumped and beaten up,’ Drinkwater explained. ‘The timing was awful and the fact I twisted my ankle was the worst thing. I went in for a scan the next day and found out it was to do with the bone and I couldn’t believe it. It was just like ‘could this get any worse?’.
In April 2019, Drinkwater was charged with drink driving after crashing his car. In the 2019-19 campaign, he didn’t play once under Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri and admits he had lost interest in football.
‘I won’t use Chelsea as an excuse for the drink driving. Obviously, my mental state wasn’t the best, but it was ridiculous and it should never have happened.’
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