CONFIRMED! Chelsea target Antonio Conte to stand down as Italy boss after Euro 2016

15 Mar

Chelsea managerial target Antonio Conte will stand down as Italy boss after Euro 2016, the Italian Football Federation has announced, paving the way for his move to Stamford Bridge.


The 46-year-old took control of the Azzurri in August 2014 and secured their qualification for the European Championship in France.

But FIGC president Carlo Tavecchio on Tuesday told Sky Sport Italia that Conte was seeking a return to “daily work” in club football after the summer finals.

Conte, who won three Serie A titles in charge at Juventus ahead of his foray into international management, has reportedly held talks with Chelsea about becoming their next permanent boss.

An announcement could be made as early as this week, with both parties now free to complete a deal which would see Conte continue interim boss Guus Hiddink’s restoration job at Stamford Bridge after Jose Mourinho left the club in disarray.

Tavecchio said: “Antonio Conte has told me that at the end of the European Championship his experience with us will come to an end.

“He can hear the call of the training ground, the daily work of training, and that is understandable.”

Conte is understood to have been taking English lessons in the last few months.

His Juventus team, who by 2014 boasted Carlos Tevez, Arturo Vidal, Paul Pogba and Andrea Pirlo in a fearsome line-up, won three Italian titles in a row before Conte took up the reins of the national team.

An unspectacular qualifying campaign raised questions about his long-term credentials and commitment to Italy and Tuesday’s announcement came as no surprise.

If he takes the Chelsea job he will likely bring assistants Massimo Carrera, Angelo Alessio, Paolo Bertelli, Mauro Sandreani and his brother Gianluca to west London, while Tavecchio has said Conte’s successor “will be discussed in due course”.

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