Chelsea assistant coach Ray Wilkins insists Joe Cole will remain at the club despite reports of a rift between the England midfielder and owner Roman Abramovich.
It has been suggested that Cole and his representatives have infuriated the Russian with their hard line stance over wages during contract negotiations.
“We are desperate to keep Joe,” said Wilkins. “I know the club are and we as a management group feel the same. He is a very valuable asset to us.
“It is a contractual situation that he and the club I am sure will sort out at a later stage.
“We sincerely hope he will be here next season. We would love to keep Joe. I am sure he and the club will sort it out. I would not have thought his form has been affected by the contract situation.
“I have spoken to Joe on numerous occasions. He is upbeat about his future here. He loves Chelsea. He wants to stay at Chelsea and I am sure that the club and his people will sort the situation out.”
Chelsea entertain Stoke tomorrow in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and the holders of the trophy insist it is still a major competition in their eyes.
“The FA Cup is massive,” said Wilkins. “Thinking back to last May and the joy we experienced in the dressing room at Wembley. These guys play this game to win trophies and we want to win the trophy badly.”
Meanwhile the club have been rocked by the loss of full-back Jose Bosingwa for the rest of the season.
Bosingwa underwent surgery on his left knee after suffering the injury against Aston Villa in October and he will also miss the World Cup finals with Portugal.