Arsenal are claimed to have made contact with Antonio Conte’s representatives over his possible switch across London from Chelsea.
The Italian manager showed his true ability when leading his Blues side to win the Premier League at the first time of asking, and moved to change the dynamic of the division using a 3-4-2-1 formation which has since been adopted by a number of top sides.
Conte is claimed to have fallen out with his hierarchy in West London, and has been tipped to leave to return to Italy come the end of the season, although he has two years remaining on his current contract, and is also claimed to be ready to see out his contract depending which source you trust.
The latest claim however is that Arsenal will offer him the chance to stay in London, an idea he is said to be open to, although Inter Milan are favourites for his signature.
“One interesting piece of information I have heard – which won’t come as too much of a surprise to anyone – is that this this is definitely Antonio Conte’s last season at Chelsea,” Kevin Whitcher wrote.
“But what is less well known is that Arsenal sounded out the then Juventus manager in 2014, when Arsene Wenger’s last but one contract was winding down.
“There is a belief that the manager would have called it a day if Arsenal had lost the FA Cup final to Hull, and certainly if they had failed to progress against Wigan in a semi-final that required a penalty shoot-out to progress.
“Amidst the euphoria of the final win, Wenger signed up for three more years, and Conte took the Italian national job for two seasons, before joining Chelsea after the 2016 Euros, and landing the Premier League in his debut campaign.
“Still, a channel of communication was established with Conte’s people and the Italian has expressed an interest in remaining in London after the end of the season.
“There has been contact with Arsenal in recent weeks and he would still be open to take on the rebuilding job to return the club to the top table.
“His other (and most likely) destination is Milan to take the job at Inter.
“And the reason Conte is more likely to return to Italy is not that his family is based there (an arrangement that works for them, regardless of where Conte is working), but simply the unlikelihood of Arsene Wenger stepping down next summer before his contract has been fulfilled.”
Would Conte be the ideal man to step in when Wenger steps down? With Conte only leave the Blues in order to return to Italy?