It was reported over the weekend that Chelsea legend Gianfranco Zola was set to return to the club as an assistant coach under new incoming manager Maurizio Sarri. Well, here we are five days later and there is still no confirmation yet about Sarri, and current Blues manager Antonio Conte remains in his post.
As for Zola, his agent says that Chelsea haven’t even contacted his client yet. However, Zola has left his World Cup punditry gig with South African broadcaster SuperSport, and he remained coy about his future when signing off for the final time.
Here’s the video:
Gianfranco Zola basically confirming all the rumours about him joining Sarri at Chelsea. It’s official guys! #GiofrancoZola #MaurizioSarri #ChelseaFC #CFC pic.twitter.com/B49WoUmdns
— FartArt (@DillyCFC) June 19, 2018
“I was afraid you were going to ask me this. Really, I don’t know,” Zola responded when asked about the reports linking him with Chelsea.
“There are a lot of rumors about me, at the moment nothing has happened. We will see what happens in the future. At the moment it is only talking, nothing is decided.”
He seemed to confirm there that talks have been held. Meanwhile his agent Fulvia Marrucco tells a different story. Marrucco said in an interview with Radio Kiss Kiss:
“Gianfranco is a Blues legend and his arrival is not dependent on that of Sarri. I can only speak on behalf of my client and reaffirm that there has not yet been any meeting with the Chelsea management.
“For Sarri to go to Chelsea, three things need to happen: Conte has to be sacked, Napoli and the Blues have to reach an agreement and, finally, Sarri has to reach an agreement with the club.”
“It (Sarri working with Zola) is a hypothesis, but we’d have to see what the roles would be and how their duties would be split.”
As Marruco points out, this specific transition is a three step process, and step one hasn’t even transpired yet, so there is still a ways to go on this transfer rumor. Reports indicate that Chelsea have to first agree to buy out the final year of Conte’s contract, and thus give him the £9 million he would be owed if he is dismissed.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, is currently a regular contributor to SB Nation, WGN CLTV and Chicago Now.
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