Maurizio Sarri is expected to be announced as Chelsea manager early next week after a prolonged negotiation that involved not just Chelsea and Sarri, but Antonio Conte and Napoli.

Sarri is now expected to replace Conte next week as Chelsea seek to appoint the new boss before the start of pre-season.

Conte has prepared a rigorous pre-season training programme in case he remains in charge, but the expectation is still that Sarri will replace him as head coach before Morata and Co start work again at Cobham a week on Monday.

Negotiations between intermediaries aimed at releasing Sarri from his Napoli contract have progressed over the past fortnight, but Chelsea have been reluctant to jump too quickly into agreeing to pay off Conte.

The Italian is not expected to walk straight into another job, so Conte could be due around £9million if he does not work for the 12 months that remain on his contract.

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