Voller: Bender and Chelsea target Schurrle are not for sale

The Bayer Leverkusen director categorically states that the talented duo will be staying at the BayArena for the coming season, amidst transfer interest from Europe's top sides
Bayer Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller has ruled out summer departures for key duo Lars Bender and Andre Schurrle.

Chelsea have been chasing Schurrle, though they had already appeared to have missed out on him for now, with Bayern Munich openly courting his midfield team-mate, and Voller has stepped out to insist that he has no intention of parting with the duo, regardless of the sum offered.

"We could have pocketed more than €50 million [£39.4m] for both players had we sold them, but 'no' fell easy to us," he mused to Bild.

"We will achieve more with Bender and Schurrle than without them, as they have no equivalent substitutes. I am not afraid of having disgruntled players - these guys have a top character.

"I will say it again: both of them will be staying here."

Bender was targeted by Bayern after the Bavarians' move for Athletic Bilbao's Javi Martinez failed, while Chelsea have been joined by Serie A side Inter on the list of clubs interested in Schurrle.