Chelsea And Conte Agree To Split

Chelsea expect to appoint former Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri as Conte's replacement

Chelsea expect to appoint former Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri as Conte's replacement

Cape Town - Antonio Conte reportedly attended meetings at Chelsea's Cobham training ground on Saturday morning as the club's 2018/19 pre-season preparations began.

"Sarri is close to being new Chelsea manager", De Laurentiis told reporters during the unveiling of new Napoli coach Carlo Ancelotti.

Conte took training at Chelsea on Thursday morning, but was then sacked along with his coaching staff.

This has ignited interest from Chelsea who is keen to sign a solid midfielder who can strengthen their base and the West London club are trying to hijack a deal from their rivals.

The first-team players will be joined by select members of the loan squad, who will have decisions delayed on their moves with Chelsea wanting to take a closer look at them.

The lanky Spaniard, who joined the Blues for a club-record fee of £60 million previous year, didn't have the best debut season in the English top-flight, ending the 2017-18 campaign with 15 goals in 48 appearances (all competitions).

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Since Chelsea failed to meet Sarri's release clause by the deadline, De Laurentiis is now holding out for a reported €8m (£7m) in compensation.

Now, the same report says that Sarri has made it clear to Chelsea FC officials that they must keep hold of both of the attacking players ahead of his first campaign in charge at Stamford Bridge.

De Laurentiis also revealed the 59-year-old Sarri could be joined at Stamford Bridge by Italy worldwide Jorginho.

He did win the FA Cup last season, but he failed to qualify for the Champions League.

"My agreement with (Chelsea owner Roman) Abramovich (on Jorginho) is irrespective of whether or not Sarri ends up taking charge of the Blues".

During three years with Napoli, Sarri has not won a major honour but has guided the club to finishes of second, third and second again - behind Juventus in 2017-18.

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