Chelsea have confirmed the appointment of former Napoli manager Maurizio Sarri as Antonio Conte’s replacement.
The Blues have been locked in negotiations with Napoli since the end of the season as they tried to negotiate a compensation package, and are believed to have paid around £4.5million to prise him away.
With Conte demanding the final year of his £9.5m-a-year salary paid in full, as well as those of his staff, the decision to swap one Italian for another has proved costly for Chelsea.
Despite winning the FA Cup, Chelsea put up a limp defence of their title last season and Conte was criticised for both performances on the pitch and clashes with the club’s hierarchy off it.
Sarri will be expected to play a more attacking and adventurous style of football, and the Italian is excited about taking over the reins at Stamford Bridge.
Sarri has a hugely controversial past, accepting a fine for calling Roberto Mancini a ‘f****t’ two years ago while he was also forced to apologise back in March for making ‘sexist and unacceptable’ comments towards a female reporter.
Asked if a goalless draw against Inter Milan – coupled with Juventus’ win over Udinese – had damaged his side’s title chances, Sarri replied: ‘You’re a woman, you’re beautiful, and I won’t tell you to f*** off for those two reasons.’