Chelsea confirm Joe Cole & Michael Ballack to leave club at end of June

Stamford Bridge stalwarts depart...
Chelsea have confirmed that both Joe Cole and Michael Ballack will be departing from Stamford Bridge at the end of the month.

The two midfielders' contracts are set to expire and they have not signed new deals.

Cole has been linked with a clutch of clubs in England, most notably Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, with Spurs boss Harry Redknapp publicly declaring an interest in securing his services this week.

A statement on the Blues' official website reads: "Chelsea Football Club can confirm that Joe Cole will be leaving the club upon the expiration of his contract at the end of this month.

"It brings to an end Joe's seven-year stay at Stamford Bridge, and we would like to thank him for his dedicated years of service and wish him well in his future career."

Ballack meanwhile has been linked with a move back to his homeland and Schalke 04, but some reports on Wednesday intimated that he was a target for new Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho.

A further statement from the club also confirmed the German international's exit, with the west London outfit thanking him for his four years at Stamford Bridge.

"The midfielder has spent four years at Chelsea, and all at the club would like to place on record our thanks for his service and wish him luck for the future," it read.

In the meantime, the midfielder's agent, Michael Becker, has maintained that his client is "completely surprised" to have been given the cold shoulder at west London.

He told RTL that Ballack would have been willing to take a pay-cut to continue plying his trade at Stamford Bridge, while maintaining that there had been no contact between the two parties for three months.

Becker said: "He has not spoken to Chelsea for three months."