Chelsea manager Antonio Conte’s future has been the subject of intense speculation all season, and it now seems that the Blues playing squad fully expect to be playing under a new coach next season.
The former Juventus coach arrived in England after guiding the Italian national side to the semi-final of Euro 2016 in France, and enjoyed a superb first season at Stamford Bridge – winning the Premier League title and reaching the FA Cup final.
However, Conte’s relationship with his clubs board has become fractious after his public complaints about his clubs transfer policy.
Chelsea’s performances on the pitch this season have also fallen a long way short of the standards they set last season, and the Blues go into the final round of Premier League fixtures in fifth place with only an outside chance of finishing this campaign in the top four and qualifying for next seasons Champions League.
There has also been reports of unrest within the squad due to many players becoming tired of the Italian’s intense and repetitive training regime.
Despite all this a recent good run of results had left many people questioning whether Chelsea would be making a mistake by letting Conte go at the end of the season.
However, after the Italian’s bizarre decision to rest Eden Hazard and Olivier Giroud for the disappointing 1-1 draw against Huddersfield midweek that all but killed his sides chances of reaching the top four, Matt Law of the Telegraph reports that the Blues players now believe they will have a new manager this summer.
“The overriding feeling among the players is that a new head coach will be in charge next season and that Conte killed any chance of a rethink by making so many changes[against Huddersfield]” Law wrote.
Even if Chelsea win their final Premier League fixture against Newcastle this weekend they are reliant on Liverpool losing at Anfield to Brighton if they are to finish in the top four and qualify for next seasons Champions League.