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Antonio Conte's massive Chelsea backroom staff revealed


After months rumors and backroom machinations, Antonio Conte's rather sizable backroom staff has been officially unveiled. As expected, given the new boss's history of working with a large support team, there are plenty of changes.

Just as Mourinho used to, Conte will roll with three assistant managers.  His long-time cohort Angelo Alessio (starting as teammates at Juventus, then as coaches at Siena, Juve, and the Italian national team) will be joined by Gianluca Conte (never go against the family!) and the ever-present Steve Holland, who's now served as assistant under ... *deep breath* ... Andre Villas-Boas, Roberto Di Matteo, Rafael Benitez, Jose Mourinho, and Guus Hiddink.

Carlo Cudicini, who teased a mystery role not too long ago, will also serve as an "assistant to the first team head coach" though what exactly that entails is not clear.  Note that it's "assistant to" and not just "assistant".  Dwight Cudicini will also continue in his role as club ambassador.

Former assistant first team coach Eddie Newton will presumably return to his role as "loan player technical coach" (i.e. liaison), just as he's done since Di Matteo's sacking (before Hiddink elevated him temporarily to assistant).

Unsurprisingly, given Conte's emphasis on fitness and stamina, three new fitness coaches are joining up as well, to work alongside the long-serving Chris Jones, who's been with the club since 2006.  Paolo Bertelli, Julio Tous, and Costantino Coratti all worked with Conte in the Italian national team setup.  Tous will also act as a "performance analyst".

We're also adding a dedicated "nutritionist" in Tiberio Ancora, who's been credited with playing a huge role in keeping Conte's teams at Bari, Siena, Juventus, and Italy so fit and action-ready.

Last, but certainly not least, Chelsea have confirmed that Gianluca Spinelli has joined as the new goalkeeper coach.  The former Genoa-man will be assisted by the one and only Henrique Hilario.  There's no word on what Christophe Lollichon's new role may be or if he's even planning on staying with the club (which could get awkward).

So, if you're keeping track, that's seven new faces (Alessio, G.Conte, Bertelli, Tous, Coratti, Ancora, Spinelli), two reassignments (Cudicini, Newton), three continuing assignments (Holland, Jones, Hilario) and one intriguing unknown (Lollichon).


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