Antonio Conte fears losing 'best in the world' Chelsea star

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The Belgium goalkeeper, who has been repeatedly linked with Real Madrid, spent three years on loan from Chelsea at Atletico Madrid before succeeding Petr Cech as the Blues' number one.

Courtois's current deal expires at the end of the 2018-19 campaign, but talks over an extension have stalled amid interest from the likes of Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, and Juventus. But the renewal of the contract is a task for the club.

The Blues will seek talks with Courtois' representatives over the coming months in a bid to tie their no.1 down to a long-term deal, though Stoke City's Jack Butland is reportedly already being considered as a potential replacement, if Courtois does in fact decide to depart.

"I must be honest I think this question is for the club, not for me", Conte told reporters ahead of Saturday's Premier League trip to Liverpool.

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However, as per the aforementioned report from Matt Law, the board at Stamford Bridge are not prepared to wait until the season's close to open negotiations with their shot-stopper, amid genuine fears that the Belgian may be attempting to run down his contract with the club.

"As you know very well, if a big player decides to not sign a new contract it is hard for the club to face this issue", he said. I consider him one of the best. In this season, maybe [Alexis] Sanchez and [Mesut] Ozil are finishing their contracts with Arsenal.

Stoke won't let him leave on the cheap and will only need to look at Everton's £30million signing of Jordan Pickford to know they can drive a hard bargain. "These situations are not simple but every club has to try and solve all these situations". Maybe he is now the best but for sure in the future [he will be].

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