Chelsea target Maurizio Sarri to replace Antonio Conte as manager

Chelsea want to appoint Napoli’s Maurizio Sarri as the club’s next manager.

Speculation surrounding Antonio Conte’s future at Stamford Bridge refuses to die down, despite the Italian insisting during the week that we wanted to see out the remaining 18 months of his contract.

Conte has been linked with a return to the Italy national team and he has previously been tipped to take over from Unai Emery at Paris Saint-Germain.

Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone and Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri have been touted as possible replacements for Conte, but La Gazzetta dello Sport have claimed Sarri is Chelsea’s number one target.

Club owner Roman Abramovich has been following Sarri’s progress at Napoli and is willing to pay the £8 million release clause to bring the Italian to Stamford Bridge for the start of next season.

Sarri spent the bulk of his early managerial career in Italy’s lower leagues, before being appointed as Empoli boss in Serie B in 2012.

He won promotion to Serie A in his second year in charge and managed to keep them in the top flight the following season.

Sarri replaced Rafa Benitez at Napoli in June 2015 and has gone on to build a side that is currently challenging Juventus for the league title.

Former Barcelona boss Luis Enrique also remains in the running and he is still amongst the bookmakers’ favorites to replace Conte.

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