• Defender says he will only play for top European club
• Carvalho may stay at Chelsea if Serie A transfer fails

The Chelsea midfielder Ricardo Carvalho may remain at the club if interest from Internazionale cools as he says he is not prepared to play for anyone but a top European club. The defender’s contract runs until June 2012 and, though he has been linked with a move to Manchester City, he says he would rather remain in London than take a step down.

“I would like to open a new page in my career,” said Carvalho. “I am ready to do it. I have spoken to the Chelsea executives and they know what I want. We shall see what happens. My agent Jorge Mendes knows what I want.

“If I leave Chelsea, I plan to play in another top club, otherwise I will remain in London and respect my contract,” he added. “It’s not a case of being arrogant, in recent years I’ve played at a certain level and I can continue to play at that level still.”

The Italian champions Inter were among the clubs hoping to lure the Portugal international to the San Siro this summer. However, the club’s president Massimo Moratti yesterday poured cold water on the potential move, claiming Inter did not need Carvalho. The defender remains keen on joining the Serie A side.

“Everyone has spoken well about Inter,” said Carvalho. “My friend Tiago who plays at Juventus has said that at Inter you have great champions and that the Serie A is a good tournament. Tiago and I spent our holidays together and we spoke a lot about it. But Inter must first find the agreement with Chelsea.”

Carvalho, who joined Chelsea from Porto in a £19.85m transfer, endured a frustrating season last year as injuries restricted him to just 18 appearances.

“I have spent five years in London and I have experienced beautiful moments,” he said. “I have won a lot and the only thing that we have missed is the Champions League. The first four seasons were beautiful but the last one has been truly difficult.

“In London they made a lot of mistakes regarding my injury and I lost patience. It’s right that we go our separate ways.”

Should a move to the San Siro materialise, the 31-year-old centre-back would be reunited with Jose Mourinho, who coached him at Porto and Chelsea.

“With Mourinho there’s no need to talk because he knows me,” he said. “When I arrived at Porto we started to win. Those two and half seasons were unforgettable. Then we went together to England.

“Mourinho doesn’t tolerate mistakes. If you make one or two mistakes in training you are out. That is why when you have him as coach you have to give everything whether in training or in the game. Everyone is the same, whether you are young or a champion.”

reference – the guardian.co.uk.