Ben Gibson has been told he is going nowhere in January after Middlesbrough slapped a £35m price-tag on him to fend off interest from Chelsea.
Gibson’s seamless adaptation to life in the Premier League has attracted the gaze of the league leaders and Everton, who are also keeping tabs on the 23-year-old.
But Boro have made it clear they have no intention in parting company with Gibson once the transfer window re-opens.
Boro are aware the demand for Gibson will only increase come the summer.
But the North East club also recognise English talent can be expensive.
Chelsea will give Conte a transfer warchest to spend in January to strengthen his squad.
Blues supremo Roman Abramovich has already entrusted the Italian coach to implement a 3-4-3 formation.
He recognises Conte wants to bring in his own specialist players in order to utilise Chelsea’s new playing style.
John Stones’ £47.5m move to Manchester City from Everton in August is but one example.