Antonio Conte: Chelsea set to announce the departure of former Italy manager

Manager Maurizio Sarri and midfielder Jorginho are moving to Chelsea

Manager Maurizio Sarri and midfielder Jorginho are moving to Chelsea Credit getty images

Antonio Conte's beleaguered Chelsea spell came to an end on Friday, with former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri expected to take the reins at Stamford Bridge.

The Italian had two contrasting campaigns at the helm and has now vacated his post.

Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois have both publicly said they were seeking clarity on Chelsea's summer plans before deciding whether to sign new long-term contracts, with the club facing a season without Champions League football after finishing fifth in the Premier League.

That success was helped by prolific striker Diego Costa, who scored 20 goals and provided eight assists. The club have yet to confirm Conte's departure, but it is understood that he was relieved of his duties after taking training yesterday morning.

Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas has "accidentally" liked a tweet celebrating Antonio Conte's exit on Twitter. They defeated Manchester United 1-0 in the FA Cup Final in May, winning the competition for the eighth time.

He has won a Premier League title and an FA Cup in consecutive seasons.

Widespread reports emerged in England and Italy that the Blues had dismissed Conte after two seasons in charge. He was eventually replaced by Carlo Ancelotti on May 23 after speculation that Sarri's buyout clause would be activated by another club.

Sarri is believed to have agreed to bring former Chelsea favourite Gianfranco Zola - whose managerial career has stalled after a series of failures - along as one of his backroom staff.

For other fans, however, the departure is a bit more bittersweet. With just 12 days before Chelsea's first pre-season game and less than a month before the transfer window closes - Sarri will need to get to work quickly and efficiently.

Sarri could be followed by midfielder Jorginho from Napoli, with Chelsea willing to pay £50m, plus £7m in bonuses, for the pair.

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