Max Allegri, current Juventus boss and former alleged front runner for the Chelsea job, has confirmed that he will be staying with the Old Lady for the foreseeable future, thus stepping down from the seemingly exhausting race for the Chelsea job:
Speaking after he was awarded the Panchina d’Oro for being voted Serie A’s best coach for 2014-15, he told Sky Sport Italia:
“Next year, I will still be the coach of Juventus because I have another year on my contract. There’s never been anything [with other clubs].
“I’m fine here and there are no problems. Now we’re thinking of a fifth Scudetto in a row and the Coppa Italia. We work to improve every year.”
Allegri’s comments confirm Antonio Conte as the likeliest candidate to become our coach. He’s also apparently going to meet with Chelsea (or even Abramovic himself) to discuss the plan for when he takes over. Conte is reportedly asking for the appointments of his long-term assistant Angelo Alessio, defensive coach Massimo Carrera, fitness coach Paolo Bertelli, his own brother Gianluca, who is an opposition scout, and Mauro Sandreani, who specialises in tactics and talent spotting. Our club on the other hand, want keep long term assistant Steve Holland on board and would also like to include club legend Didier Drogba in our back-room staff, when his playing contract with Montreal Impact expires at the end of the MLS season. It is even reported that the details stretched to Conte’s plan for Ruben Loftus-Cheek and the club’s youngsters, something which seems almost an obligatory mention these days.
And with the summer window getting closer and our season being pretty much over, the world media wasted little time linking us with more and more targets. Some new, some very old.
It is reported that within his talks with the club, Conte has asked for FIVE signings. The first of which, is none other than Edinson Cavani. The Uruguayan would probably be wearing a Chelsea shirt right now had we not bulked at Napoli’s asking price at the time. He has been consistently linked with a move to Chelsea ever since. But now that Ibrahimovic, the man who has been making Cavani “unsettled” at PSG is leaving, one could see very little reason why our not so friendly south neighbors would sell what would then be their only elite striker.
Moving on, two names have been popping up often since the Conte rumors have started are Radja Nainggolan and Miralem Pjanic, both of whom make sense seeing our desperate need for reinforcements at the back, but one could dream that we can still do better either by promoting from within our signing world class players.
Even though Terry is most likely heading out and we are most likely going to sign a replacement, we have not been linked with many defenders as one would logically predict (how silly could one be sometimes, expecting the transfer rumor mill to make sense) but we’ve been linked with one particular defender, Leonardo Bonucci. The 28-year old has been Conte’s man since their days in Serie B with Bari, and his arrival at Chelsea would make plenty of sense as he would make an excellent partner to Zouma when he returns from injury. He’s a great passer of the ball, very experienced and most importantly Italian, so he must be good.
The last name on the “secret” list is the shocker, Conte has apparently placed Juan Cuadrado on his Chelsea WANTED list! How that would work and what it even means is beyond me, as teams don’t usually try to sign players they already own, I think. Most have interpreted this as Conte wanting us to recall Cuadrado from his loan in Turin, which would not be simple given that they have an option to buy. But if this was the case, it would still be incredibly puzzling with Cuadrado having had a horrid 6 months in the PL, and his performances in Italy have not exactly been that convincing either.
Plenty of rumors are flying around these days, more will be in the atmosphere soon, so grab your popcorn and gather around to pray that we don’t sign another Djilibodji