Alvaro Morata has admitted he would always be open to a return to Real Madrid in the future.
The Chelsea striker has come in for some criticism in recent weeks after a red-hot start to life at Stamford Bridge.
Morata has missed some big chances in crucial games since the turn of the new year and fans have been turning on their record signing.
Chelsea paid £70million to prize Morata away from Real last summer, but the Spain international hinted a return to Madrid is not out of the question.
Speaking to Spanish TV, Morata was asked if he would have to think twice about returning to Real were the club to call him today and ask him to come back.
He told Espacio Reservado: ‘I have to respect Chelsea who have made a great effort for me. And I’m very happy here. But Madrid is always Madrid.’
Chelsea fans will not be happy to hear their star striker talking up Real, with the goalscorer currently unavailable for selection.
Morata will miss Chelsea’s next game against West Brom and is set to sit out his sixth match in a row due to a back injury.
‘We are talking a lot about the bad results but sometimes we forget that we are facing a serious situation [with Morata],’ Antonio Conte said on Friday.
Chelsea 2017/18 Fixtures
West Brom (H) – Mon Feb 12
Hull City – FA Cup (H) – Fri Feb 16
Barcelona – Champions League (H) – Tues Feb 20
Manchester United (A) – Sun Feb 25
Manchester City (A) – Sun March 4
Crystal Palace (H) – Sat March 10
Barcelona – Champions League – (A) – Wed March 14
Burnley (A) – Sat March 17
‘Players like Morata – that for us are important – are missing for a long period. I don’t know [when he will return] because he has this problem.
‘We struggle to find the solution and to solve the pain in his back. I don’t know how long he needs. I’m a bit worried. You know very well the importance of the player.’
Real have moved once before to re-sign Morata after activating a buy-back clause in 2016 when the attacker was playing for Juventus.