Barcelona coach Luis Enrique said Tuesday he wanted to hold on to forward Pedro Rodriguez but did not rule out that the Spaniard might leave, with Premier League champions Chelsea reportedly interested.

“I would prefer him to stay but it is up to the player to decide,” he told a news conference, his first since the Spanish and European champions returned to training on Monday.

“I respect any decision the player may make and I am aware that for a certain sum he could leave.”

The 27-year-old forward recently signed a new contract which lowers his buyout clause from 150 million down to 30 million euros ($33m, A?21.3m).

Despite having renewed his deal until 2019, he has told media recently he is willing to leave after finding himself behind the star trio of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez in the pecking order during last season’s treble-winning campaign.

“There have obviously been offers and I am in a difficult situation in the club,” Pedro told reporters on Monday.

“You always want to play more, have more options and be in the front line.”


Spanish and British media have reported that Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho is interested in signing the player.