Antonio Conte will step down from his role as Italy manager after this summer’s European Championships, the Italian Football Federation have confirmed.
Conte is the overwhelming favourite to take over from interim boss Guus Hiddink at Chelsea and has already verbally agreed terms on a three-year deal.
The 46-year-old’s contract with the Azzurri expires after the Euros in France and he is looking for a return to club management.
Italian Football Federation president Carlo Tavecchio confirmed the former Juventus manager’s departure to Sky Sport Italia this morning.
“Conte will leave the national team after the European Championships,” Tavecchio revealed. “He hears the call of the pitch and of daily work, which is understandable.”
Conte’s trusted assistants Angelo Alessio and Massimo Carrera are nailed on to join the former Juventus manager at Chelsea and could be followed by two more new faces.
Scouts Mauro Sandreani and Gianluca Conte, brother of the Blues target, are candidates while Steve Holland is expected to remain part of any restructured coaching setup.
The Blues are keen to make a swift appointment in the wake of a disastrous few days which have seen the club knocked out of the Champions League and FA Cup.
Roman Abramovich will make significant funds available to the Italian to rebuild a team devoid of confidence after their worst season under his ownership.
An announcement confirming Conte’s appointment as Chelsea’s new manager is expected before this weekend’s visit of West Ham United.
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