Chelsea sack Antonio Conte as Maurizio Sarri appointment looms - sources

Published on: 12 July 2018

Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis says highly sought after Jorginho will be joining Chelsea after recently reaching an agreement with the club. Gab Marcotti explains how Chelsea's managerial situation will play into Eden Hazard's decision to stay at Stamford Bridge or leave for Real Madrid. Gab Marcotti puts himself in the shoes of the Chelsea brass and explains why the club should hold off on replacing Antonio Conte with Maurizio Sarri. ESPN FC's Shaka Hislop feels Willian's future is dependent upon who is in charge of Chelsea next season. Gab Marcotti provides some insight into Roman Abramovich's visa issues and more in-house problems Chelsea are currently facing.

Chelsea have sacked coach Antonio Conte after reaching a compensation agreement for the final year of his contract, with former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri's appointment as his replacement imminent, sources have told ESPN FC.

Conte, who had refused to walk away from Chelsea unless the final year of his contract was paid in full, has been waiting since May to resolve his future at Stamford Bridge after winning the FA Cup, but difficulty in securing Sarri delayed the process.

Chelsea are expected to announce Sarri's appointment on an initial two-year contract imminently -- together with the signing of Italy international midfielder Jorginho for a combined fee of €65 million (£57.5m) -- after convincing Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis to release the 59-year-old from his contract.

In May, Napoli appointed Carlo Ancelotti to replace Sarri amid speculation that the latter could take the Chelsea job.

Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois have both publicly said they were seeking clarity on Chelsea's summer plans before deciding whether to sign new long-term contracts, with the club facing a season without Champions League football after finishing fifth in the Premier League.

Conte led Chelsea to the Premier League title in his first season in England and followed up that achievement with an FA Cup triumph, but his relationship with the board became damaged beyond repair, highlighted by his repeated public and private complaints about transfer policy.

He also clashed with senior players such as Diego Costa and David Luiz while others had begun to grow weary of his methods. In the wake of Chelsea's FA Cup win, Willian obscured Conte in a team celebration photograph posted on Instagram.

Chelsea hoped that another club might attempt to buy Conte out of the final year his Stamford Bridge contract as he was unwilling to resign, but Paris Saint-Germain's appointment of Thomas Tuchel and Real Madrid's choice of Julen Lopetegui eliminated the possibility.

Conte, who had only coached in his native Italy before joining Chelsea, most recently led the national team after three seasons in charge at Juventus.


Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.