Chelsea fail to land Christoph Freund as sporting director despite interest

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Christoph Freund will not be heading to Chelsea in order to remain as Red Bull Salzburg sporting director having been heavily linked to the vacant Stamford Bridge role.

The update comes after Freund was at Stamford Bridge last week as Red Bull Salzburg took on Chelsea in Graham Potter's first game in charge – which ended as a draw.

Chelsea are even thought to have agreed a deal with Freund with Salzburg notified of his imminent departure before the change of heart – which was explained by Freund to fans.

READ MORE: Erling Haaland and five other stars Chelsea's target Christoph Freund has developed

The 45-year-old said: "When a club like Chelsea is interested in you, it is a big honour not just for you, but also for the work of the club in general.

"But I've come to the conclusion that FC Red Bull Salzburg is the best place for me.

"We're in the middle of a very intense phase and have important tasks to do in the Bundesliga, Cup and Champions League – that's what my whole focus and concentration are on."

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Red Bull Salzburg CEO Stephan Reiter added: "Christoph Freund has been performing wonderful work for us for many years, and only recently extended his contract to 2026.

"I can hereby confirm that he will remain FC Red Bull Salzburg sporting director.

"He informed me about the interest of Chelsea, of course, and we have spoken about it on a personal level with some good discussions.

"The fact is that he will remain our sporting director! He has not made a request with us to leave."

Freund has helped development talent such as Erling Haaland during his time in the role, impressing Todd Boehly with his stats-driven approach to making signings.

Salzburg are currently on a run of nine consecutive Austrian Bundesliga titles and sit four points clear at the top of the table this season following seven wins from nine matches.

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