Serie A chief confirms Chelsea are set to sign Antonio Conte’s successor

Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis has confirmed that Chelsea are close to appointing Maurizio Sarri as their head coach. The Blues have been pursuing the 59-year-old for more than a month and they now appear prepared to discuss a compensation package with the Naples outfit.

In a report covered by Sky Sports, De Laurentiis has confirmed that talks are progressing swiftly between the sides and the move should go through once the financial matters are resolved with their respective lawyers.

Sarri was initially expected to join the Blues following his sacking from Napoli in May but the move was put on halt after Napoli decided against releasing him unless a compensation package worth £7m was settled.

After weeks of negotiations, the FA Cup holders are understood to have reached an agreement to pay off the manager’s release and an announcement is expected before the club’s pre-season tour.

Antonio Conte has been taking charge of pre-season training over the past few days but he is now certain to be dismissed from the managerial post with the assurance of a severance fee worth £9m.

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