Lorenzo Insigne warned Maurizio Sarri that joining Juventus would represent "a betrayal" of Napoli, where the Chelsea boss was in charge for three years.

Sarri's future is the subject of speculation amid reports he could take the head coach role at Juventus, vacated at the end of 2018-19 by Massimiliano Allegri.

But Insigne urged his former boss to remember that he guided Napoli to three consecutive top-three finishes in Serie A during his time at the helm and in doing so etched his name into the club's history.

"It's speculation that gives me displeasure," Insigne told a news conference ahead of Italy's Euro 2020 qualifier against Greece.

"He did so much for us players and all the Neapolitan people. He's also a professional, but him choosing Juve would hurt.

"It will be a betrayal for us Neapolitans once it becomes official."

Insigne, 28, has represented Napoli for his whole career and played some of his best football under Sarri.

The Italy international indicated Sarri's legacy at Napoli could be affected by a switch to the Bianconeri, saying: "I'm sorry to think about him sitting on the Juventus bench.

"He was very important to me for many reasons. I hope he changes his mind. If he went to Juventus he would hurt us but I can't blame him. It’s his decision."

Jorginho, who played under Sarri at Napoli and then followed him to Chelsea, recently said it would be "sad" if the 60-year-old manager was to leave Stamford Bridge after just one season.

Kylian Mbappe's search for a "new project" away from Paris Saint-Germain appears to be gathering steam.

The PSG superstar, 20, enjoyed another standout season for the Ligue 1 champions, scoring 39 goals in 43 games in all competitions.

But the France international drew attention to his future last month when he hinted at a move away from Paris.

Reports from Spain now suggest Mbappe may have taken a step closer to the Real Madrid switch he has continually been linked with.

 

TOP STORY – MBAPPE HANDS IN TRANSFER REQUEST

Mbappe wants out from PSG after handing in a transfer request, according to Spanish TV channel El Chiringuito.

Real Madrid have been the most heavily linked with a move for the forward, particularly since France great Zinedine Zidane returned to the helm.

But it seems Madrid have given up on trying to sign Mbappe's team-mate Neymar, ruling out a move for the Brazilian, according to AS.

With a rebuild already gathering pace with the signing of striker Luka Jovic and with Eden Hazard seemingly on his way, Madrid are also ready to listen to offers for playmaker Isco, according to Marca.

ROUND-UP

- Real Madrid, however, may miss out on Christian Eriksen, with the Mirror reporting Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has told the LaLiga club Spurs have no intention of selling the midfielder. The Mirror also reports that Real Betis midfielder Giovani Lo Celso is trying to force a move to the Champions League runners-up.

- Ajax star Matthijs de Ligt has been linked with a host of European heavyweights and Liverpool are ready to target the Netherlands centre-back, an international team-mate of Virgil van Dijk's, according to Bild.

- The race for Benfica attacker Joao Felix is well and truly on. According to Portuguese outlet Correio da Manha, Manchester City have informally triggered the teenager's €120million release clause, with the 19-year-old also linked with United and Madrid. The Sun says City are also lining up a move for Juventus right-back Joao Cancelo.

- With uncertainty over David de Gea's future, the Mirror says Manchester United have made contact with Lille regarding goalkeeper Mike Maignan and the Ligue 1 side want €35m for the shot-stopper.

- Atletico Madrid also have some rebuilding to do and they are confident of signing Chelsea's Marcos Alonso, according to the Mirror, as a replacement for Bayern Munich-bound Lucas Hernandez. Diego Simeone also wants Barcelona defender Nelson Semedo, Sport reports.

- Inter continue to be linked with attacking talent and West Ham's Marko Arnautovic, a former Nerazzurri loanee, is their latest target, according to The Sun. Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku and Roma's Edin Dzeko are also apparently on their wishlist.

Cristiano Ronaldo is still the world's best player despite not reaching his usual heights at Juventus, according to former Portugal team-mate Nani.

Ronaldo helped Juve win Serie A and the Supercoppa Italiana in his first season in Italy, scoring 28 goals in 43 games in all competitions.

However, that was the five-time Ballon d'Or winner's lowest scoring return since 2008-09, when he netted 26 for Manchester United.

But Nani – now playing for MLS side Orlando City – has no doubt Ronaldo is still the best player in the world.

"It was a successful season for him. I think he did great," he told Omnisport.

"It is not easy to play in Italy because the football there is very tactical, the defenders there defend a lot.

"He scored a lot of goals, continued to be the best in the world. I think he did great."

While Juve won an eighth successive Serie A title, they again fell short in their bid for a first Champions League crown since 1996, losing to Ajax in the quarter-finals.

Juventus will wait until a new head coach is appointed to discuss the possibility of an audacious attempt to re-sign Paul Pogba from Manchester United, says sporting director Fabio Paratici.

The Serie A champions are reported to have begun dialogue with the Red Devils over a deal for Pogba, who departed Turin to re-join United in August 2016 for a then world-record fee after winning four league titles and two Coppas Italia with Juve.

Pogba has often found his form at Old Trafford come under scrutiny and has been touted as a transfer target for Real Madrid, who are undergoing a close-season of rebuilding under Zinedine Zidane.

But the World Cup winner is said to be open to returning to Juve, with the Italian giants rumoured to be considering offering Paulo Dybala, Douglas Costa or Alex Sandro as a makeweight.

Paratici was asked about a move for Pogba and Fiorentina's Federico Chiesa – who is also reportedly on Juve's radar – and he says any transfers are dependent on who replaces Massimiliano Allegri at the Allianz Stadium.

"Federico Chiesa? We certainly have a competitive team, as far as the market is concerned, we await the name of the coach," he told reporters.

"We will make the necessary assessments after announcing it. 

"Pogba? The same, we'll speak with the new coach."

Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri is the overwhelming favourite to be appointed Juve's new head coach and has supposedly told the Blues he wants to leave to take the job.

Paratici said several names are being considered and the club are working hard to assess their options.

"We have very clear ideas about the new coach. We are working, it takes time," he added.

"As I said, we have a range of names, not just one name. There is no time limit, we are working and we are working very calmly." 

Maurizio Sarri says "the call of home is strong" amid rumours he will step down as Chelsea head coach to take over at Juventus.

The Italian arrived at Stamford Bridge on a three-year deal in July 2018 but has been heavily linked with the vacant post at Serie A champions Juve after Massimiliano Allegri's departure.

Sarri, who claimed his first piece of major silverware when the Blues beat Arsenal in the Europa League final last week, admits the lure of a return to Italy could be too potent to resist.

"For us Italians, the call of home is strong," he told Vanity Fair. "You feel that something is missing. It has been a heavy year. I have begun to feel the weight of distant friends and elderly parents I rarely see.

"At my age I only make professional choices. I won't be able to train for another 20 years. When I return home to Tuscany I feel like a stranger."

Chelsea midfielder Jorginho followed Sarri to Stamford Bridge from Napoli last year and said the club's supporters could consider a move to Juve as a "betrayal".

Sarri, though, has played down suggestions going to Turin would upset them and does not believe their relationship would suffer.

"The Napoli fans know the love I feel for them," he added. "I have chosen to go abroad for the last year and not to go to an Italian team. 

"This profession can lead to other paths; the relationship will not change. Loyalty is giving 110 per cent when you are there. 

"What does it mean to be faithful? If one day the club sends you away, what are you to do? Stay true to a wife you divorced from?"

Paul Pogba's back-and-forth career could seemingly continue if Juventus have their way.

Three years after returning to Manchester United, the midfielder may be on his way back to Turin.

Pogba, 26, might yet end up back at Juventus if reports from Italy are to be believed.

 

TOP STORY – JUVE BEGIN TALKS FOR POGBA RETURN

According to Sky Sport Italia, the Serie A champions have started to make their move for their former midfielder Pogba.

Juventus sporting director Fabio Paratici has reportedly opened talks with the France international's agent Mino Raiola regarding wages.

Still, plenty of work would need to be done, with United sure to want to recoup at least the €105million they paid for Pogba in August 2016.

ROUND-UP

- Luis Suarez could be a target for David Beckham. The Inter Miami co-owner wants the 32-year-old Barcelona star to be the club's headline signing ahead of their debut MLS season in 2020, according to Esport3.

- Perhaps that is why Barcelona are eager for Neymar to return to Camp Nou. However, according to Radio Monte Carlo, Paris Saint-Germain have told the LaLiga champions the Brazil attacker is not for sale in what is shaping up to be a drawn-out saga this close season.

- Benfica attacker Joao Felix is wanted and two of the Premier League's biggest clubs are set to join the chase for the Portuguese teenager. According to the Mirror, rivals Manchester City and Manchester United want to land the 19-year-old, who has also attracted interest from Real Madrid as Benfica look for a €120m release clause to be met.

- Zinedine Zidane's rebuild at Real Madrid is set to begin with the signing of Chelsea star Eden Hazard. According to Goal and Mundo Deportivo, Madrid representatives are heading to London to complete the deal, expected to be in the region of €120m. That may just be the start for Madrid, who are close to sealing a €55m deal for Lyon's Ferland Mendy, according to AS.

- Antonio Conte is eager to strengthen his Inter squad and the club may meet Roma this week to discuss a move for Edin Dzeko, according to Sky Sport Italia. The striker, 33, only scored nine league goals in 2018-19, his worst return since his first season in Italy in 2015-16, but may be available for as little as €10m.

- Champions League winners Liverpool and runners-up Tottenham are also seemingly wasting no time after the Madrid decider. According to the Mirror, striker Divock Origi is set for talks with Liverpool after being offered a new contract following his heroics in Europe. Tottenham, meanwhile, have made contact with Lyon over midfielder Tanguy Ndombele, according to Le10Sport, with a deal potentially to be struck this month.

Former Juventus defender Lilian Thuram believes it is hard to see Pep Guardiola leaving Manchester City amid reports linking the manager to the Serie A champions.

Guardiola has been linked with a shock move to Turin after winning two Premier League titles in three seasons with City.

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri is also a reported target for Juve, who opted to sack Massimiliano Allegri last month.

Thuram, who won two Serie A titles in five seasons at Juve, feels it is unlikely Guardiola would leave City.

"Guardiola is a great manager, but I think he's not going to leave Manchester City honestly," he said on Monday.

"Juventus always had great managers and I think football is wonderful because you can play it in a lot of ways.

"You can win playing with the style of Guardiola or with the style of [Liverpool manager Jurgen] Klopp. They have different styles.

"Juve won a lot of titles in Serie A in a row thanks to a really good manager. And I'm sure the next manager of Juventus will be another great one. The club know what to do as always."

Juve have won eight consecutive Serie A titles, but have continued to fall short in their bid for a first Champions League crown since 1996.

Former Napoli boss Sarri is also linked with the vacant post and Thuram praised the 60-year-old Italian.

"I don't know Sarri as manager really well, but I know that his teams play great football," he said.

"His Napoli played really well and he won with Chelsea, but I read somewhere that he doesn't want to leave Chelsea."

Jorginho feels it would be "sad" were Maurizio Sarri to leave Chelsea after a single season in charge.

Sarri led the Blues to a third-place finish in the Premier League and his side thumped Arsenal 4-1 in the Europa League final in 2018-19.

Chelsea also reached the final of the EFL Cup, losing to Manchester City on penalties, but the club's fans regularly aired their disapproval over Sarri's tactics.

Jorginho followed Sarri to Stamford Bridge from Napoli last year but the midfielder could be about to see his boss return to Italy, with Serie A champions Juventus said to be ready to appoint him as Massimiliano Allegri's successor.

Italy international Jorginho, though, hopes Sarri remains in charge of Chelsea for 2019-20 and warns the Napoli fan base could feel "betrayed" if he moves to Turin.

"It would be sad because I think he did a good job," Jorginho told a news conference of rumours Sarri could leave.

"We finished third in the Premier League, we won the Europa League and we reached the EFL Cup final despite all the critics.

"It was a good first season in Chelsea. It would be sad for everyone.

"The Napoli fans still have him in their hearts; it's normal that they could get angry. They could treat it as a betrayal; they're like that. We'll see what happens."

Emerson Palmieri also feels Sarri should stay in London for a second season.

"It's difficult to talk about that," the defender said of the speculation. "I think he had - and we had - a good season.

"It's not been easy, but he has to stay at Chelsea. Never say never in football, though. We have to keep on doing our job."

As well as Sarri, Jorginho was criticised by sections of the Chelsea support for his perceived negativity in possession in his first term in England.

However, the 27-year-old believes he has proved his doubters wrong.

"I received a lot of criticism maybe because in England they are not accustomed to seeing a playmaker with my skills," he added. "Because I'm not a physical player but I think more about playing the ball.

"It was difficult for them to understand it because the results were not good. They needed to find someone to blame. But I always believed in myself and I kept going. At the end, I showed to everyone that they were wrong."

Fiorentina have quashed claims they could sell star winger Federico Chiesa this summer.

Inter were linked with a move for the Italy international over the weekend, with newspaper reports claiming he is wanted by new Nerazzurri boss Antonio Conte.

However, Fiorentina issued a statement on Monday, stating the club's conviction that Chiesa will remain in Florence.

"We continue to read news spread by others about the future of Chiesa and where he should play next season," the club statement read.

"The current ownership would like to make it clear that Federico is a Fiorentina player who is tied to the club on a long contract, and therefore, as far as we are concerned, he should become the symbolic player for the team that is being built."

Chiesa, 21, is the son of former Italy striker Enrico Chiesa and joined Fiorentina as a schoolboy.

He has established himself in the Viola first team over the past three seasons, recently becoming a regular feature in Roberto Mancini's Italy side.

Fiorentina finished a lowly 16th in Italy's top division last season, while Inter took fourth place before replacing coach Luciano Spalletti with former Juventus, Chelsea and Azzurri boss Conte.

Serie A champions Juventus and Bundesliga winners Bayern Munich have also been linked as possible suitors of Chiesa in recent weeks.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have both been included in the Champions League squad of the season despite failing to reach the final.

Ronaldo's Juve only reached the last eight before being knocked out by Ajax, while Barca fell to eventual champions Liverpool despite Messi's dazzling display in the first leg of their semi-final meeting.

Messi's 12 goals in the 2018-19 Champions League saw him claim the competition's top scorer honour.

Following their stunning run to the last four, Ajax have five representatives in the squad - Matthijs de Ligt, Frenkie de Jong, David Neres, Hakim Ziyech and Dusan Tadic - while losing finalists Tottenham contribute Jan Vertonghen, Lucas Moura and Moussa Sissoko.

Winners Liverpool have three defenders in the squad - Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andy Robertson and Virgil van Dijk - along with Georginio Wijnaldum, Sadio Mane and goalkeeper Alisson. 

The selection, which was made by UEFA's technical observers, also includes Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele and Manchester City duo Kevin De Bruyne and Raheem Sterling.

Among UEFA's technical observers are Belgium head coach Roberto Martinez, England manager Gareth Southgate and former Manchester United boss David Moyes.

Champions League squad of the season in full:

Alisson (Liverpool), Marc-Andre ter Stegen (Barcelona); Trent Alexander-Arnold (Liverpool), Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax), Andy Robertson, Virgil van Dijk (both Liverpool), Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham); Kevin de Bruyne (Manchester City), Frenkie de Jong (Ajax), Tanguy Ndombele (Lyon), David Neres (Ajax), Moussa Sissoko (Tottenham), Raheem Sterling (Manchester City), Georginio Wijnaldum (Liverpool), Hakim Ziyech (Ajax); Sadio Mane (Liverpool), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Lucas Moura (Tottenham), Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus), Dusan Tadic (Ajax).

Jose Mourinho is confident Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo can still meet in a Champions League final, despite both players nearing the twilight of their careers.

The world's best two players have yet to go head-to-head in the final of Europe's elite club competition, despite both of them having won the Champions League on multiple occasions.

Barcelona and Juventus were both among the favourites to reach the showpiece in Madrid this season, but were beaten by Liverpool and Ajax in the semi-finals and quarter-finals respectively.

And with Messi approaching his 32nd birthday, and Ronaldo already 34, Mourinho is disappointed at the thought of the duo never facing off in a Champions League final, though he acknowledged it may also be positive for a debate over which of the players is superior not to overshadow such a huge game.

"First of all, I think it's a frustration for all those who like football to never have had a [Champions League] final between the two," Mourinho told Eleven Sports.

"It was almost real many times, but it never happened. I always thought that it would be a big injustice to them, in the sense that everything would be centered on them and that one would come out holding on to the big ears cup and the other would come out with his head down.

"I always thought it would be a great injustice to have a duel between the titans of the two best players in the world in the last decade, for one of them to bow to the weight of defeat. That's why it's probably a good thing it never happened.

"Can it still happen? It could still happen. They're both in clubs that want to win. They don't hide that they want to win themselves. Of course it can happen."

Messi scored a sublime free-kick - his 600th club goal - in Barca's 3-0 first-leg win over Liverpool in the semi-finals, only for Ernesto Valverde's side to lose 4-0 in a remarkable second leg, with the Reds meeting Tottenham at the Wanda Metropolitano on Saturday.

Antonio Conte's appointment as Luciano Spalletti's replacement at Inter may not be a hugely popular one among fans given his Juventus background, but it looks a smart hire.

Spalletti was dismissed on Thursday despite guiding Inter to successive fourth-place finishes in Serie A and the club announced Conte's arrival on a three-year deal the next day.

It marks Conte's return to football following his sacking by Chelsea at the end of the 2017-18 season, as the Blues missed out on Champions League qualification.

Conte's last job in Italy was with Inter's bitter rivals Juve, whom he coached for three seasons having represented them for 13 years as a player.

Some Inter fans might not be enthusiastic about Conte's hiring as a result of those Juve ties, but Opta data suggests the club has taken a step in the right direction with his appointment.

 

Goals aplenty

Although critics of Conte might accuse him of being a pragmatist, generally over spells with Juve and Chelsea, his teams have not been short of goals.

Across the five seasons in question, Conte's teams have never averaged fewer than 1.74 goals per game (2017-18), while Chelsea netted an average of 2.3 in each match of his first season at the helm.

By contrast, Spalletti's Inter managed only 1.65 goals per game in 2017-18 and that decreased to 1.5 this term.

While Spalletti's backers will rightly point out Conte has had better squads at his disposal, the latter even had a more impressive record in the season he was sacked by Chelsea.

 

Defensive solidity to suffer?

During Conte's time at Juventus, the Old Lady were fairly defensively shrewd, conceding 0.71 goals per game at most in a single campaign.

At their best in 2011-12, they only allowed 0.6 goals in per match, increasing to 0.71 in 2012-13 before dropping back to 0.67 the following campaign.

But at Chelsea there was a significant increase, letting in 0.93 and 0.98 goals every game in his two seasons in charge.

Spalletti's Inter have averaged 0.77 and 0.88 concessions each outing over his two years at San Siro, considerably better than Conte's Chelsea record.

However, Conte would likely suggest such an increase is to be expected when playing more attacking football, as Chelsea scored more than 100 across all competitions in both his seasons at Stamford Bridge.

 

A proven winner

Arguably Conte's greatest draw statistically is his winning record at both Juve and Chelsea.

Even in his second – and less successful – season in the Premier League, he still managed to win 54.2 per cent of his 59 matches in all competitions.

By comparison, Spalletti has only won half of his games in both campaigns with Inter.

Should Conte really inspire Inter, he will be hoping to get somewhere close to the 78.7 per cent winning rate he posted at Chelsea in 2016-17, as they won a Premier League and FA Cup double.

Conte also boasts an average of 2.19 points per game in his past five seasons as a club manager, while Spalletti has managed 1.79 with Inter.

Antonio Conte accepts some Inter fans might object to his appointment as coach due to his Juventus background but he insists he is the right man to lead them because he shares their "fearlessness".

Following Thursday's announcement of Luciano Spalletti's dismissal, the hiring of Conte looked a formality after prolonged speculation.

Inter confirmed Conte's arrival on Friday, with the former Italy, Juve and Chelsea coach signing a three-year contract at San Siro.

Despite Conte's successful track record, some Inter fans are less than enthusiastic due to the 49-year-old's strong ties to bitter rivals Juve, whom he represented for 13 years as a player and later coached to three Scudetti.

But Inter released a video shortly after the announcement in which Conte explains why he is a good fit for a "club that's not for everyone".

"Finally, it's time to get back to it," he began, referencing his season away from coaching. "I have many reasons to do so, perhaps even too many and just as many challenges are ahead of me.

"But I can't wait. A club that's not for everyone, with its fans who will be wondering, why me exactly?

"Because we share the same ambitions, fearlessness, hunger and determination. Now it's my turn. I'm here, Inter."

Conte's main priority will be turning Inter into a title-winning side again, having not claimed the Serie A crown since 2009-10.

Inter have confirmed the appointment of Antonio Conte as their new coach following the departure of Luciano Spalletti.

Despite qualifying for the Champions League by finishing fourth in Serie A, Inter announced the dismissal of Spalletti in a short statement on Thursday.

The news came as a surprise to few, as rumours had linked Spalletti with the sack for several weeks with Conte mooted as his potential replacement.

Speculation went into overdrive on Wednesday when a photo of Conte with Inter's media team surfaced on social media, and the club made an announcement on Friday.

"A new chapter in my life is beginning, I'm really excited," Conte said in a statement.

"Through my work, I'll try to repay all of the trust that the president [Steven Zhang] and directors have placed in me. I have chosen Inter because of the club it is, because of the project's sound basis and how ambitious it is. Because of Inter's history.

"I was struck by the club's transparency and the desire to bring Inter back to where it belongs."

A title winner in both Italy and England, Conte will reportedly receive a base salary of €10million for the first two seasons he is in charge.

The 49-year-old had been out of a job since leaving Chelsea last year, having paid the price for finishing fifth in the Premier League. However, the season before he had led the Blues to a league and FA Cup double.

He returns to Serie A having won the competition three times as coach of Juve, who he left in 2014 to take charge of the national team.

Change is sweeping through Serie A with four of Italy's grandest clubs on the hunt for new coaches to lead them into the future.

Inter became the latest side to seek fresh ideas when they removed Luciano Spalletti on Thursday, continuing a period of upheaval started by Roma's dismissal of Eusebio Di Francesco in March.

Dissatisfaction extended right to the top of the table as Juventus, a model of stability in recent seasons, saw Massimiliano Allegri depart, while AC Milan maintained modus operandi.

Some members of the high-profile quartet appear to be on a collision course over coaching targets and, with queries over the direction of each, we set out to answer the key questions.

 

AC MILAN

Why the change?

Gennaro Gattuso guided his beloved club to their highest position and best points haul since 2012-13 but relinquished his role in "mutual agreement" with Milan after failing to deliver Champions League qualification.

Who is next in line?

Lazio's Simone Inzaghi could get the chance to follow in the footsteps of brother and former Rossoneri boss Filippo, while Sampdoria's Marco Giampaolo and Sergio Conceicao of Porto also shape as prominent contenders.

What is the priority?

Strengthening a problematic midfield that lacks depth and quality would go a long way to boosting Milan's bid for the top-four finish that has eluded them across six successive seasons.

Leave that area of the pitch unattended and the cycle of instability is bound to stay unbroken.

INTER

Why the change?

The experienced Spalletti did not emerge with much credit from the off-field saga that surrounded Mauro Icardi - stripping the striker of the captaincy and later restoring him to the starting XI - and the opportunity to pursue a three-time Scudetto winner proved too difficult to ignore.

Who is next in line?

Antonio Conte, a free agent since leaving Chelsea at the end of last season, is almost certain to take charge in the very near future.

What is the priority?

Real planning for next season can only begin when clarity on the future of key striker Icardi is reached.

The disruptive circus that has become attached to the Argentine could outweigh his ability and stated desire to stay at San Siro, with Inter reportedly lining up Romelu Lukaku as a replacement.

JUVENTUS

Why the change?

Juve brought Cristiano Ronaldo to Turin in an amibitious attempt to finally sate their burning desire for Champions League success but Allegri's fifth shot yielded only more disappointment.

The former Milan head coach also attracted criticism for favouring a playing style that shed fantasy in favour of function, and he seemed ready to explore a fresh challenge following a serene stroll to the Scudetto.

Who is next in line?

Maurizio Sarri, with a major trophy now on his resume, is the firm favourite to take charge at Allianz Stadium, pending an agreement being reached between the Bianconeri and Chelsea.

What is the priority?

Paulo Dybala's potential departure further complicates an attack that appeared to suffer from inconsistency of selection.

Sarri, who errs on the side of overuse, could be the man to set defined roles for Ronaldo and his fellow forwards.

ROMA

Why the change?

Di Francesco became the first to fall earlier this year, when a loss to Porto in the last 16 of the Champions League sapped the last of Roma's patience with an underwhelming follow up to an impressive 2017-18 season.

Claudio Ranieri did an admirable job in a caretaker capacity, but his second stint in charge never contained a long-term brief.

Who is next in line?

Reported target Gian Piero Gasperini has signed a new deal at Atalanta, which leaves Roberto De Zerbi, Sinisa Mihajlovic and potentially Gattuso among the names on an abstract shortlist.

What is the priority?

Address a leadership vacuum in the playing squad.

Former sporting director Monchi followed Di Francesco out of Stadio Olimpico and left behind a gifted collection of young players who need on-field guidance, especially in the wake of club great Daniele De Rossi's exit.

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