Former Chelsea midfielder Ramires has stated an ambition to return to Europe and once again represent the club before retiring, describing it as his "second home".

The Brazil international made 251 appearances during a five-and-a-half year stint in west London that followed an £17m ($23.6m) switch from Benfica during the reign of Carlo Ancelotti [BBC Sport] in the summer of 2010, winning every major domestic and European honour before joining Chinese Super League (CSL) outfit Jiangsu Suning - then coached by former Blues full-back Dan Petrescu - in January 2016 in a deal that could eventually be worth £25m [The Guardian].

And while Ramires insists he is currently content in China, where his side have just entered their final campaign under Fabio Capello, he harbours a clear desire to head back to Chelsea one day after being given permission to train at their Cobham base in November [Corriere dello Sport] as he looked to recover from a knee injury ahead of a proposed move to Inter Milan.

"It's the team that will always have a special affection and where I still have the desire to play before ending my career," he said in an interview with UOL Esporte of Brazil.

"I've been treating an injury that I recently had at the club and I can say without a doubt that it's like my second home there.

"I know that the doors of Stamford Bridge will always be open for me and to go back to wearing the club shirt some day would be spectacular."

Ramires was initially expected to begin training in Milan in December ahead of a New Year transfer to Inter, whose majority shareholder since 2016 has been the Suning Holdings Group. However, such a deal never came to fruition with the Nerazzurri instead agreeing a loan for Barcelona's injury-plagued midfielder Rafinha that includes an option to purchase the player on a permanent basis for €35m this summer.

The 30-year-old continued to be linked with Inter throughout the January transfer window before ultimately remaining in China, where he missed Jiangsu's season-opening 3-1 victory over Guizhou Hengfeng on Sunday [4 March].

Quizzed about that interest from the Serie A giants, Ramires said: "There has been a lot of talk about Inter's interest, but nothing concrete has come directly to me, at least until today.

"Everyone knows Inter is a great club, and to play in Europe again is a desire I have. My reality and my focus is on helping the team make a great 2018 and nothing else is going through my head at the moment."

Ramires won the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup, Europa League and League Cup during his stint at Chelsea Paul Gilham/Getty Images