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Antonio Conte's protracted divorce from Chelsea was finalised on Friday (Saturday NZ Time) when he was sacked after a two-year tenure in which he won the English Premier League and FA Cup but failed to gain the power he craved at the London club.

Reports all through Thursday, July, 12 said the Stamford Bridge outfit have terminated the contract of the 48-year-old after two years in charge.

Chelsea, who have also been in protracted negotiations with former Napoli coach Maurizio Sarri whose appointment is imminent, may have been hoping Conte would find another job before they had to act.

"Chelsea Football Club and Antonio Conte have parted company", the club said in a terse statement. "In the title winning season, the club set a then-record 30 wins in a 38-game season".

The club's 64-word announcement was eventually made on Friday (Saturday NZT), ending with: "We wish Antonio every success in his future career".

Chelsea are expected to announce Sarri's appointment on an initial two-year contract imminently - together with the signing of Italy worldwide midfielder Jorginho for a combined fee of €65 million (£57.5m) - after convincing Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis to release the 59-year-old from his contract.

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Several of the first team players at Chelsea have grown frustrated with the former Juventus coach's methods, and the club have taken the decision to move in a new direction.

While Chelsea's pursuit of Sarri has been rocky since the end of the season, the club is already working on several transfers requested by the Italian, including a group of targets from Serie A.

After months of speculation, Antonio Conte is no longer Chelsea manager. "Jorginho would go to Chelsea regardless of Sarri".

Media reports said Conte's departure would take to 85 million pounds the amount Chelsea has spent on paying off sacked managers - nearly the record fee Manchester United paid in 2016 for France midfielder Paul Pogba.

Many will argue the move is a harsh one, as Conte was decent throughout his reign and he can leave with his head held high as the Blues did not have a trophy-less season during the two terms under his tutelage.


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