Although, as is always the case, the Stamford Bridge faithful confirmed their loyalty to Antonio Conte, with chants of ‘Antonio’ resounding around the ground, as the side beat Liverpool, I’m probably not alone when I say I wouldn’t be surprised if when we come to the end of the season, the board announce a parting of the ways.
If that is the case then it seems very likely that the Napoli boss, Maurizio Sarri, will be one name on a wish-list of replacements.
Sarri has had a more than decent season with Napoli, with his side challenging for the Serie A title.
However, the chances of Napoli tasting glory and winning Serie A ended this weekend when they could only draw, 2-2, at home to Torino.
According to our good friends at The Mirror, the result escalated into a war of words between Sarri and the Napoli owner, Aurelio Di Laurentiis.
Sarri, firing the first onslaught, is recorded as remarking,
“If the president is happy, good, if he is not happy, I’m sorry, and he can always take the exit option he has. If he calls me, I will calmly talk about it.”
It sounds like the situation may have been festering for a period of time, however, Sarri then further added,
“There is a contract that has a clause worth €8m. We have 11 days to evaluate the situation and that is more than enough time. If the era is over, that’s down to the club.”
But Di Laurentiis, more than held his own when it came to trading insults, commenting,
“With Sarri there is a lot of work, he is a genius, but can still improve by 300 percent.
“He is a man full of doubts, on how much he should earn and where he should work.
Perhaps indicating that the club may not be happy with the situation either, however, Di Laurentiis further adds,
“I tell him to stay calm because this is his home and he has no enemies here. We want him with us.”
Which gives a broad hint that any differences could be patched up.
But, the sensitivity of the stand-off is perhaps best summed up with Di Laurentiis finishing with,
“Who knows, he could go to a richer club and after a year risk a huge disappointment.”
Now is that a clear reference to Chelsea’s penchant for a short-term hire them and fire them policy when it comes to managers?
Personally, I reckon Conte’s reign is coming to an end and that despite the fact Napoli may want to keep Sarri he is heading to a job at Stamford Bridge.
But, then again, I may be wrong!
Your views on the above subject would be most appreciated in our comments facility beneath this article.