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PSG appoint Tuchel; Allegri staying at Juventus reduce Chelsea’s options in Conte replacement search

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Tick-tock

Sporting Clube de Portugal v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Champions League Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images

If recent rumors are any indication, Chelsea’s manager search seems to be converging on Maurizio Sarri. The current Napoli coach is one of the protagonists in a slowly building drama at the San Paolo, but most recent reports seem to agree that he’s at least set for a meeting with owner Aurelio De Laurentiis this week. What may come out of that meeting is anyone’s guess.

Sarri would certainly fit Chelsea’s supposed consideration of going with a less famous name than the usual appointees, though given that he’s ten years Conte’s senior, he would not fit the idea of going with a younger coach, even if his ideas are minty fresh to mask the cigarette smell.

But, Sarri’s just about alone at the top of the rumor pile these days. Luis Enrique has been discarded repeatedly, while two names who have been linked earlier are effectively off the market. Or, in the case of Thomas Tuchel, in fact off the market. The 44-year-old was confirmed as the next Paris Saint-Germain boss this morning.

Meanwhile, over the weekend, Max Allegri celebrated his fourth (4th!!) consecutive Scudetto and Coppa Italia Double — that’s seven Serie A titles in a row for Juventus — by making it quite clear that he’s not going anywhere ... unless he’s sacked, which isn’t going to happen.

Meanwhile, Roberto Mancini is set to take over Italy (there goes that Conte rumor then), while Carlo Ancelotti seems in line at Napoli if Sarri does leave (so now Conte swap there either).

But Sarri actually ending up at Chelsea still seems rather unlikely and mostly the stuff of tabloid fodder. Conte certainly seems on his way out unfortunately, but even more concerning is that not only are Chelsea not making any obvious progress in replacing him (at least as far as the rumor mill’s concerned), we’re not even in the conversation for a new technical director. The summer is here, it’s only 90 days long, and we’ve got tons of work to do.

P.S.: One name that briefly flashed across the radar recently was Fulham boss and former Chelsea flop Slaviša Jokanović, who’s trying to guide the Cottagers back to the Premier League via the promotion playoffs. My initial reaction is that we’ve got about as much chance of this happening as Mexico national team coach Juan Carlos Osorio taking over. Also in the pile and ripe for silly speculation: Pochettino vs. Levy “collision course”.