Chelsea have agreed a ‘deal in principle’ for Italy boss Antonio Conte to become their new manager.
Conte’s contract with Italy expires at the end of Euro 2016 and the 46-year-old wants to return to club management, as revealed by Sportsmail last month.
Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport claimed on Tuesday a deal had been struck between Conte and Chelsea, and that Roman Abramovich will make the final call on whether he gets the job.
MANAGERS UNDER ABRAMOVICH
Claudio Ranieri (September 2000 to May 2004, worked under Abramovich during 2003-04 season)
Jose Mourinho (June 2004 to September 2007)
Avram Grant (September 2007 to May 2008)
Luiz Felipe Scolari (July 2008 to February 2009)
Guus Hiddink (February 2009 to May 2009)
Carlo Ancelotti (July 2009 to May 2011)
Andre Villas-Boas (June 2011 to March 2012)
Roberto Di Matteo (March 2012 to November 2012)
Rafa Benitez (November 2012 to May 2013)
Jose Mourinho (June 2013 to December 2015)
Guus Hiddink (December 2015 – present)
Mourinho was sacked in December and replaced by Guus Hiddink, who was installed as interim manager
Conte will meet with the FIGC – the Italian football federation – in March to confirm that he wants to leave after this summer’s tournament in France.
He is also set to hold further talks with Chelsea in the same month ahead of Italy’s friendlies with Spain and Germany.
Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri was another contender for the Chelsea job but is set to stay with the Italian champions as they prepare to offer him a new contract.
The club’s sporting director, Giuseppe Marotta, said this week: ‘The conditions for Allegri’s contract renewal are all there. The cycle has just started with him and I believe we can continue with him.
‘On top of that, finding a club better than Juventus isn’t easy. I think that he can still get great pleasure from this team, thus there is no Allegri problem.’
Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone was also on the list but the 45-year-old is dedicated to the Spanish club as they prepare to move into their new 69,000-seater stadium and compete with Barcelona and Real Madrid for the Spanish title. Abramovich also appeared to lose interest in Simeone.
Conte has previously won three Serie A titles with Juventus as a manager and five as a player
ANTONIO CONTE’S MANAGERIAL CAREER
Team Played Won Drew Lost Win %
Arezzo (06-07) 26 9 9 8 34.6
Bari (07-09) 67 32 20 15 47. 8
Atalanta (09-10) 14 3 4 7 21.4
Siena (10-11) 44 22 14 8 50
Juventus (11-14) 151 102 34 15 67.6
Italy (14-) 16 9 5 2 56.3
The Chelsea owner did want Pep Guardiola after Mourinho was sacked in December but lost out to Manchester City, with the Bayern Munich manager heading for the Etihad Stadium in the summer.
Conte became Chelsea’s leading candidate last month with the manager ready for a challenge outside of Italy, having previously won three Serie A titles with Juventus as a manager and five as a player. Sources claim the Italian has even been taking English lessons in preparation.
He could be confirmed by Chelsea before the start of Euro 2016 to avoid speculation during the tournament – similar to Louis van Gaal and Manchester United before the 2014 World Cup.
Conte was named on the shortlist for the United job before Van Gaal took over at Old Trafford, but subsequently signed a two-year contract to become Italy manager in August 2014.
DISCLAIMER : Opinion articles are solely the responsibility of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of the publishers of ElombahNews!
Would you like to be receiving ALL ElombahNews links ‘On The Go’ on WhatsApp Or Telegram? If yes, join us here on WhatsApp or Telegram, or provide us your Telephone number via firstname.lastname@example.org or sms/inbox +2349050382526 and you are good to go!
DOWNLOAD ElombahNews mobile app here
Send eyewitness accounts/ reports/ articles to email@example.com; follow us on twitter @ElombahNews; like our Facebook page ElombahNews