Chelsea will reportedly allow Maurizio Sarri to leave next week so he can take the vacant managerial role at Juventus for next season.
Italian media claim Juventus are keen on recruiting Sarri to replace the departed Massimiliano Allegri in Turin for next season.
This new twist comes as a surprise to many given that the 60-year-old has only been at Chelsea for one season.
But it appears the lure of returning to his native Italy has won him over, with Sky Sports claiming he’s informed Chelsea of his desire to leave in the summer.
After winning the Europa League and securing them a third-place Premier League finish, the Blues were understandably reluctant to part with Sarri. However, they have ultimately decided to not stand in his way of a return to Italy.
The former Napoli coach had another year left on his contract at Stamford Bridge. The club could’ve extended it to another 12 months.
But it’s understood Sarri was upset at his lack of influence in the Chelsea decision-making process. He also felt uncomfortable with life in England, which convinced the club board to allow him to leave.
“For us Italians the call of home is strong,” Sarri told Vanity Fair earlier this week.
“We feel that something is missing. It has been a heavy year. I felt the weight of distant friends, elderly parents I rarely see. But at my age, I only make professional choices. I won’t be able to coach for 20 years.
“It’s hard work, the dugout. When I return home to Tuscany I feel like a stranger. I have slept thirty nights in the last few years!”
Sarri won 39, drew 13 and lost 13 of his 63 matches in charge of Chelsea last season.
Wolves manager Nuno Espírito Santo and former Paris Saint-Germain coach Laurent Blanc are tipped as candidates to replace Sarri.
Blues legend Frank Lampard, who led Derby County to the Championship play-off final in his first season in management, is also in the running. While a surprise name in Allegri has also cropped up.