Jose Mourinho has reiterated that Mohamed Salah will definitely leave Chelsea this summer, declaring that the player "doesn't belong to my squad".
Pacy winger Salah, 23, arrived at Stamford Bridge in a £11m ($17m) deal last January after impressing in European competition with Swiss champions FC Basel and attracting interest from the likes of Liverpool, yet his first-team opportunities in the Premier League have proved rather limited since.
He featured on 10 occasions during the second half of Mourinho's first season back at the club in 2013/14, but was restricted to just eight appearances in all competitions last term before joining Fiorentina on loan in February as a replacement for Chelsea-bound Juan Cuadrado.
Despite proving his ability at the Stadio Artemio Franchi with a number of positive performances, however, the door to Salah finally establishing himself in West London appears firmly closed with his manager previously admitting that it would be "better not to have Salah back" due to his squad already containing five wingers.
Mourinho further dispelled any notion that the Egyptian international could stay at Chelsea in the aftermath of a disagreement between Fiorentina and rival suitors Inter Milan, insisting that he is content for him to depart on another loan deal.
"He doesn't belong to my squad and he's not staying here," Mourinho was quoted as saying by Goal in Charlotte, North Carolina after his side's penalty shootout victory over Paris Saint-Germain at the International Champions Cup tournament.
"The important thing is that he plays like he did at Fiorentina, so [I'm] happy with him going on a loan. Italian football is difficult football to play, especially for attacking players. So if it's not Fiorentina it's Roma or Inter or Juve – I don't know. Maybe he has a loan.
"He's a good boy and a good player. He needs more top-level football so I'm happy with any decision him and the club make."
While Salah's departure appears guaranteed, just where he will end up next is not quite so clear-cut following an eventful transfer saga that has yet to reach a satisfactory conclusion.
Fiorentina, believing they had secured the right to loan the player for 18 months as part of the original deal with Chelsea reported by the London Evening Standard to have included a fee of £700,000, threatened to take legal action earlier in July after he reportedly refused to rejoin the club.
Inter are believed to be similarly keen on Salah, with director general director general Marco Fassone having confirmed such an interest and manager Roberto Mancini last week talking him up as a potentially versatile addition who could be deployed out wide or even as a second striker.