Chelsea have agreed a ‘deal in principle’ for Italy boss Antonio Conte to become their new manager.
Conte’s contract with Italy expires at the end of Euro 2016 and the 46-year-old wants to return to club management, as revealed by Sportsmail last month.
Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport claimed on Tuesday a deal had been struck between Conte and Chelsea, and that Roman Abramovich will make the final call on whether he gets the job.
Conte will meet with the FIGC – the Italian football federation – in March to confirm that he wants to leave after this summer’s tournament in France.
He is also set to hold further talks with Chelsea in the same month ahead of Italy’s friendlies with Spain and Germany.
Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri was another contender for the Chelsea job but is set to stay with the Italian champions as they prepare to offer him a new contract.
The club’s sporting director, Giuseppe Marotta, said this week: ‘The conditions for Allegri’s contract renewal are all there. The cycle has just started with him and I believe we can continue with him.’
‘On top of that, finding a club better than Juventus isn’t easy. I think that he can still get great pleasure from this team, thus there is no Allegri problem.’
Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone was also on the list but the 45-year-old is dedicated to the Spanish club as they prepare to move into their new 69,000-seater stadium and compete with Barcelona and Real Madrid for the Spanish title. Abramovich also appeared to have lost interest in Simeone.