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Azpilicueta 'flattered' by Barca interest but wants Chelsea stay

Cesar Azpilicueta says he is flattered by reported interest from Barcelona but wants to continue playing for Chelsea.

The Spain international has become a key figure at Stamford Bridge since moving from Marseille in 2012, this season switching from his natural full-back position to feature in a three-man defence.

While Azpilicueta's performances in both roles have led to speculation of a bid from LaLiga giants Barca, he is determined to simply carry on his current fine form for the Premier League leaders.

"It's flattering to be linked to Barcelona: it means you're playing well," he told The Guardian. "I wasn't hearing those sort of stories last season. That's a consequence of us being top of the Premier League, things are going well.

"My objective since I arrived was to grow as a player and a person. I've adapted to the city, to the country. I feel settled, I'm comfortable with the language, my family is very happy.

"Right now my only objective is to continue with Chelsea."

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Azpilicueta - who signed a contract until 2020 last December - is not the only player to have been linked with a big-money move away from Stamford Bridge, though, with the futures of Eden Hazard and Diego Costa subject to constant speculation.

However, the Chelsea defender is hopeful the club can keep all of their key men and push on again next season.

"It would be a shame [if players left] because we have a great team," Azpilicueta said. "But the club will work on it with the coach and the technical staff. They will know what he wants.

"We need to get this season finished first. Then there will be all sorts of rumours. In the end, I'm sure, we will have a very competitive team again."