When we outlined the possible replacements for Max Allegri a week and a half ago, there was one name that the author (Sam) and his boss (Me) came to a mutual decision to exclude — Maurizio Sarri. We couldn’t see it, and maybe we didn’t want to see it based on the fact that there simply are better candidates out there than the 60-year-old cigarette-happy Italian.
A week and a half later, it’s looking more and more like Sarri is the favorite to take the job.
That’s not because Sky Italia is telling us that. But when it comes to comparing the signs of a potential Sarri appointment and any of the other candidates and there’s plenty of smoke with the former, not so much any other the latter. Then you add in this report from the Daily Mail on Monday night, one saying that Juventus and Sarri have agreed to personal terms on a three-year contract that would see the current Chelsea boss get quite a handsome raise over his current £5 million-per-season salary he agreed to last summer.
Said report doesn’t go into a whole lot of specifics other than Sarri’s annual salary at Juventus would be in the £6.2 million range and that Juve’s pursuit will, understandably, intensify after Chelsea’s done with their Europa League obligations. The report also discusses how the eight-time defending Serie A champions would have to agree to a compensation deal with Chelsea, something that is not really difficult to avoid in these kinds of situations.
Maurizio Sarri agrees terms with Juventus which would net him a £1.2m-a-year pay rise as club look to agree compensation with Chelsea after Europa League final | @AdrianJKajumba and @Matt_Barlow_DM https://t.co/i4PYzilaKY pic.twitter.com/WZA9osd5gO— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) May 27, 2019
The potential of a split between Sarri and Chelsea already has people from the same outlet reporting that Juve agreed personal terms with the Blues’ manager singing quite a positive tune. (In case you don’t wanna click the link, here’s the quick summation: They’re going to be quite happy that Chelsea is going to party ways with Sarri.) That is probably going to be the same kind of sentiment from a large portion of Chelsea supporters who have grown to not like much of anything regarding Sarri’s managerial style.
The funny thing in this, though, is that it comes a little over 24 hours after Juventus Director of Football Fabio Paratici made it perfectly clear before Sunday’s season-ending loss to Sampdoria that any contact with potential managerial candidates would be done after said managers are done coaching. (There was also a denial about contact with Pep Guardiola, but that’s obviously not the main topic of discussion in this post.)
Maybe Sarri is, as our friends at We Ain’t Got No History said, “vertical tiki-taka-ing itself directly back to Italy” with a job at Juventus. At this point, it’s probably more likely to happen than any of the other names out there. It’s just interesting that Juventus, with clear-cut objectives to conquer Europe and the Champions League after signing Cristiano Ronaldo, might go with a manager who has yet to win a major trophy. It’s just ... interesting.