Report: Maurizio Sarri to Sign 3-Year Juventus Deal After Chelsea Agree to Exit

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistJune 8, 2019

BAKU, AZERBAIJAN - MAY 28: Maurizio Sarri the head coach / manager of Chelsea during the UEFA Europa League Final between Chelsea and Arsenal at Baku Olimpiya Stadionu on May 29, 2019 in Baku, Azerbaijan. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Chelsea have reportedly agreed to let Maurizio Sarri leave his post as manager, clearing the way for the Italian to join Juventus on a three-year deal.

Sarri's release from the Blues has been secured after a meeting between the Premier League club and the 60-year-old's agent, Fali Ramadani, per Fabrizio Romano of the Guardian.

Romano noted how Ramadani met with Chelsea on Friday to thrash out terms of the former Napoli man's exit after just one season in west London.

The report also listed the host of potential replacements the Blues will consider, including, "former Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri, Nuno Espírito Santo of Wolves, Javi Gracia of Watford, Laurent Blanc, a free agent since being sacked by Paris Saint-Germain in 2016, and former player and all-time leading goalscorer Frank Lampard."

Meanwhile, Sky Sports News reported Sarri's departure from Stamford Bridge could take place as early as "next week."

Sarri's replacement would face a tough task even repeating the exploits of the 2018/19 season. Chelsea finished third in the English top flight and also won the UEFA Europa League.

It means a return to the UEFA Champions League for the upcoming season, but the squad may not be equipped to credibly compete at this level. The group is already weaker after star man Eden Hazard was sold to Real Madrid for an initial fee of €100 million (£88.5 million) on Friday, per BBC Sport:

Real Madrid C.F. 🇬🇧🇺🇸 @realmadriden

🇧🇪✨ @hazardeden10 is bringing the SKILLS! #WelcomeHazard | #HalaMadrid https://t.co/rM2R1LO4VL

Hazard's departure comes at an inopportune moment considering Chelsea face a possible FIFA-imposed transfer ban set to cover the next two windows. The Court of Arbitration for Sport has confirmed the Blues are appealing the sanctions, according to Alex Richards of the Daily Mirror.

Not being able to recruit fresh talent will leave Chelsea increasingly reliant on academy players to make the grade. It doesn't help a pair of promising recent graduates, winger Callum Hudson-Odoi and midfield powerhouse Ruben Loftus-Cheek, are both dealing with serious Achilles injuries.

The club did at least manage to secure the signing of forward Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund before the the ban was enforced.

His versatility and flair will be vital in the post-Hazard era:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Pulisic got it from his mom 👩‍👦 (via @cpulisic_10) https://t.co/pFD5TrmO4v

Bundesliga English @Bundesliga_EN

A sensational farewell 👋 @cpulisic_10 is up for the #BundesligaPOTM vote! Who's got him? 🗳️👇 https://t.co/N09DcPPw06 @EASPORTSFIFA 💿 #FIFA19 https://t.co/GuiBMG36dY

As for Sarri's next step, he makes sense as Massimiliano Allegri's potential successor in Turin. The former "never felt comfortable living and working in England and was frustrated he did not have a close relationship with the decision-makers at Chelsea," according to Sky Sports News.

It will likely be a different story if he returns to Italy, where Sarri has a strong reputation after his enterprising Napoli side pushed Juve hard in the Serie A title race during the 2017/18 campaign.

His stylish, possession-based game would likely get more from Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala and the other marquee attackers in the Juventus ranks. Sarri's success in Europe this season might also help the Bianconceri finally return to the summit of the Champions League for the first time since 1996.