Davide Zappacosta admitted he may seek a return to Italy to secure first-team football less than a year after making his "dream" full debut for the club.
The 26-year-old defender made just 12 Premier League starts for the Blues under Antonio Conte last season following his £23million transfer from Torino, and has been an unused substitute in all three of the club's league games this term.
It seems clear that Zappacosta is second choice to fellow right-back Cesar Azpilicueta in current head coach Maurizio Sarri's eyes, and the former Torino and Atalanta defender said he was aware of interest in him back home.
"Could I return to Italy? Yes, Inter Milan had been after me," Zappacosta told the Evening Standard.
“My agent Alessandro Lucci had told me about their interest, although I've always remained focused on Chelsea."
Zappacosta scored on his full debut at Stamford Bridge in September 2017, putting Chelsea 2-0 up on their way to a 6-0 victory over Qarabag in the Champions League.
He later described the evening as "the best night" of his career, but, less than 12 months on, said a move back to Italy could be on the cards.
"Could I return in January? I have three more years on my contract here and I only want to think about doing well with Chelsea," Zappacosta added.
"There's a lot of competition here, but I want to win a place in the 11.
"After that, it's clear that if I didn't find much room, I don't think any player would like that."
Get the best features, fun and footballing frolics straight to your inbox every week.
Thank you for signing up to Four Four Two. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.