LONDON • Guus Hiddink called on Remi Garde to show Chelsea more respect after the Aston Villa manager made public his desire to sign Loic Remy.
The France striker has yet to play for Chelsea's interim manager because of a calf injury that will also rule him out of the Premier League match away to Crystal Palace on Sunday. But Hiddink insists that Remy is a big part of his plans.
Garde went into extraordinary detail in expressing his admiration for Remy on Wednesday in comments that Hiddink deemed disrespectful.
Garde and Remy worked together at Lyon in 2006 when Garde was an assistant to Gerard Houllier. And Garde even suggested that linking up again would help Remy to cement a place in France's squad for Euro 2016.
The Frenchman also pointed out that the player has a good relationship with Robert Duverne, the club's fitness coach.
Hiddink did not go as far as accusing Villa of tapping up Remy, but Chelsea suspect that they have sounded out his representatives about the prospect of a loan move until the end of the season.
Remy has started only seven Premier League games in 18 months at Stamford Bridge and is known to be frustrated about his lack of opportunities. But with Radamel Falcao out with a long-term thigh problem, Chelsea will not allow him to leave without securing a replacement.
"I don't think we or the management will go into a similar situation," Hiddink said of Garde's intervention. "You have to respect where the players are. If you're interested, talk first to the people with whom they are contracted. You cannot go into details.
"The player has signed a contract here and must be fit for us. He has to prove first of all that he's a good Chelsea player."
Falcao suffered a setback in a match during training last weekend. The Colombian has scored just once and started only one Premier League game all season and, having not appeared since October, is likely to be out for several more weeks.
"We had him in a game and he had this injury again that he had before," Hiddink said. "I think he's back to square one, yes. We hope within 10 days he might be fit again, but not to play."
Striker Patrick Bamford trained with Chelsea for the first time since ending his loan spell with Crystal Palace on Wednesday, but is likely to be sent out on loan again despite the 22-year-old's desire to fight for a first-team place.
THE TIMES, LONDON