Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri will replace Antonio Conte as Chelsea manager at the end of the season, according to shocking reports in the Italian press.
Corriere dello Sport claims that the Italian is poised to succeed his compatriot in West London this summer, just as he did at the Bianconeri in 2014 after Conte left to manage the Italian national side.
The future of the current Blues’ head coach has come under increasing speculation this season, as the relationship between the Italian and the club’s board have become strained over Chelsea’s transfer policy.
Conte unhappy with ‘shallow’ squad
The 48-year-old has struggled to hide his frustration with the lack of strength in depth his side possess this term, with the Italian going so far as to suggest he was being subjected to an “austerity programme” at Stamford Bridge.
With the reigning Premier League champions currently third in the table and 16 points adrift of runaway leaders Manchester City, the task of defending their title now appears to be an impossible one, with the hierarchy reportedly no longer seeing Conte as indispensable.
Juventus chief exec plays down reports
Indeed, Italian media claims that a deal has all been but wrapped up to bring in Allegri to replace Conte at the earliest opportunity. The 50-year-old has won plaudits during his tenure at Turin, leading Juventus to three consecutive domestic doubles.
However, Juve chief executive Beppe Marotta has attempted to pour cold water over the claims after they broke this morning. Per Team Talk, Marotta told Italian TV: “He still has a two-year contract, but will stay with us for a long time. Last year, we missed the icing on the cake. This year, we will try again. The Champions League is always our number one target.”
Header image by Clément Bucco-Lechat [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons