Willian - Chelsea - celebrates goal
Reuters/Action Images

Chelsea's Willian: Playing in MLS is my goal after European career concludes

Willian would ideally conclude his career in MLS, the Chelsea and Brazil national team midfielder recently told ESPN Brasil's Futebol no Mundo.

The 31-year-old first departed Corinthians, his boyhood club, for Europe in 2007 when he joined Shakhtar Donetsk. He’s since won two Premier League titles, an FA Cup and a UEFA Europa League title with the Blues.

“I have plans to stay in Europe and try to play here maybe for three or four more seasons," Willian said. "I believe I can still perform on a high level. After that, when I will be 35, 36 years old, I intend to go to the United States and play there. It is a goal that I have.”

Willian has scored nine goals in 70 caps for Brazil, highlighted by key roles at the 2014 and 2018 FIFA World Cups. In 333 appearances with Chelsea across all competitions, he’s scored 62 goals and provided 60 assists.

A wide midfielder who can also play in a central attacking role, Willian has been a key starter for Chelsea since the Premier League season returned. He signed a short-term contract as part of Project Restart, but would be out of contract after this season.

While Willian’s scored three goals in Chelsea’s last two league games, they have RB Leipzig’s Timo Werner and Ajax’s Hakim Ziyech arriving for 2020-21. The competition for places could get tight, with US men’s national team star Christian Pulisic also playing a similar role.

"I don't rule out returning to Brazil, it is my country and my culture,” Willian said. “But returning to Brazil would not be my first choice if I leave Europe. I have the wish to play in the United States also because of my family, being able to live in the United States would be good.”

For more from Willian, check out the entire piece here.