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Chelsea Face Losing Big-Name Stars For Nothing In The Summer As Roman Abramovich Puts Contract Talks On Hold - Report

Chelsea could soon see some major names exit Stamford Bridge as owner Roman Abramovich has suspended all contract negotiations until the summer, according to a report from The Times.

Joe Cole, Deco and Michael Ballack must all apparently prove that they warrant new contracts by helping Carlo Ancelotti win silverware this season.

Abramovich is reportedly angry about the club's spiralling wage bill, as well as still furious at the manner of the Blues' Champions League exit at the hands of Jose Mourinho's Inter.

The Russian has therefore apparently decided to send a strong message that failure will not be tolerated - and Ballack, Cole and Deco could all leave on free transfers in the close season.

Nicolas Anelka's situation is less pressing as he has a further year on his current contract, but his negotations could also be affected.

Chelsea's wage bill has reportedly grown to a Premier League record of £146.2 million and Abramovich is determined to rein in spending on salaries.

Ballack has apparently rejected the offer of a one-year deal as he wants to prolong his career until Euro 2012. His request for a compromise whereby a second year is triggered by making 30 appearances next season has not been considered by Chelsea.

Cole's talks have stalled over money, apparently, with the England midfielder unhappy not to be offered a pay rise that would have taken his wages to £100,000 a week. Chelsea offered a more modest £85,000, though Cole was also understood to have been unhappy at his prospects of playing regular first team football with Ancelotti in charge.

Deco has not been offered a new deal of any kind, but the 32-year-old has previously stated that he would be interested in a move back to Brazil.

Anelka is reportedly happy with his offer of a new three-year contract, but there will be no further negotiations for him until after the FA Cup final.

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