It’s nice to feel wanted, and John Obi Mikel is certainly that right now. Of course, he’d probably much prefer the person wanting him to be Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, but one can’t have everything.

Reports are building around Europe of which clubs would be keen to snap Mikel up in January. With a contract ending in June, Mikel represents a value recruitment plan.

The 29 year old midfielder looks increasingly likely to leave, and French club Marseille sound very keen indeed. French newspaper L’Equipe say Andoni Zubizarreta, former Barcelona sporting director and now doing the same job at Marseille, met Michael Emenalo in London earlier this month.

Screen Shot 2016-12-19 at 11.14.30Then Zubi had a meeting at a Parisian hotel with several intermediaries connected to Mikel. This one sounds like it has legs, and Marseille wouldn’t be a bad opportunity for Mikel.

The worry for Marseille is that there’s other interest, and L’Equipe point out there’s particularly strong interest from China.

£20m (that’s our figure, pick any you like) from a Chinese club for Mikel? Chelsea would love that.