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Napoli owner De Laurentiis continues to play coy on Sarri, Chelsea

“Time will tell”

SSC Napoli v OGC Nice Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

Chelsea are supposed to have attended a summit regarding Maurizio Sarri today, Friday, and while there have been no reports regarding its outcome or, in fact, whether it’s taken place at all, down in fair Italia, Sarri’s (former) boss was busy holding his own summit with the Sky Italia microphones.

Napoli owner Aurelio De Laurentiis, a man who certainly does not shy from the sound of his own voice, addressed a variety of topics, including Marek Hamsik’s asking price (€35m, which a few years ago would’ve had me launching Change.org petitions for his signing), Napoli’s goalkeeper search (Areola, Meret), and of course the Maurizio Sarri situation. But while ADL spoke on the other topics in quite certain terms, with Sarri, he was far more coy.

Sarri to Chelsea?
The call from London hasn’t arrived.
But you are sure Sarri will go to Chelsea?
Time will tell.

-Aurelio De Laurentiis; source: Sky Italia via Gianluca Di Marzio

So there we have it. Still no call from Chelsea — the story goes that we’ve been talking with lawyers and intermediaries, but surely at some point the big man has to sign off the deal — and still not sure any of this will actually happen.

Of course, De Laurentiis could just be fronting or trolling or generally making life harder for anyone else but his own team (as good owners should). Still, it certainly doesn’t sound like anything’s going to happen anytime soon, especially considering that Sarri still hasn’t officially been let go by Napoli and Chelsea still haven’t officially sacked Conte. English sources continue to lie low and all the noise continues to come from Italy.

It’s a strange situation that still doesn’t seem to have an end-game in sight. There’s even a growing sense that nothing will happen until July 1, which is when Ancelotti officially begins his Napoli tenure, the new fiscal year starts (i.e. Conte’s already paid through June 30), and Sarri’s €8m buyout clause is reactivated. With preseason set to start on July 2, that would literally be leaving things for the last minute in true, classic Chelsea style.

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