Officially Antonio Conte is still Chelsea’s manager. His time at the club, however, is numbered with the imminent arrival of Maurizio Sarri on the horizon. The chain-smoking Italian was recently replaced by Carlo Ancelotti at Napoli and is poised to take over from Conte. While Zenit St. Petersburg also made Sarri aware of their interest in him, he has reportedly turned down their advances in favour of the Blues job. And with his transfer window being condensed due to the World Cup, the 59-year-old has already started drawing up plans for his transfer targets.
The Evening Standard reports that Piotr Zielinski, Jorginho and the defensive trio of Raul Albiol, Kalidou Koulibaly and Elseid Hysaj are on their former manager’s wishlist. Despite Jorginho being heavily linked with a move to Guardiola’s Manchester City, there is a belief that Sarri’s appointment could swing the balance in Chelsea’s favour.
On the other hand, Zielinski, Hysaj and Albiol have release clauses worth £57 million, £5.2 million and £44 million respectively while Koulibaly will not come in cheap either with any possible fee expected to be in the region of £60 million.
Maurizio #Sarri may ask #Chelsea to sign a number of #Napoli players such as Koulibaly, Jorginho, Zielinski and Albiol if the Italian succeeds Antonio #Conte. #CFC pic.twitter.com/AGTQpvf5r3
— Chelsea FC Global (@Chelsea_Global) May 26, 2018
Chelsea have targets of their own namely Bayer Leverkusen winger Leon Bailey, Newcastle United captain Jamaal Lascelles and Watford’s Richarlison. Moreover, it was reported that Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis and Sarri’s relation soured over the past couple months. Both of these things mean that the former Empoli boss will have a tough time in bringing his old charges to Chelsea.
Napoli took Juventus to the brink in the race for Serie A crown this season. Each of their players performed exceptionally throughout the campaign and have now attracted the attention of a whole host of top clubs in Europe. While Napoli would be hoping to keep hold of them, most of the players will no doubt be looking to experience the Premier League football.
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