Inter Milan are reportedly plotting an audacious move to steal Chelsea manager Antonio Conte away from Stamford Bridge in the summer with a £51million contract offer.
Turin-based newspaper Tuttosport went as far as to claim in Wednesday’s edition that the 47-year-old has already agreed to a four-year contract from the Serie A giants worth £12.75m per season.
The Italian side came under Chinese ownership in 2013 with the vastly wealthy Suning Holdings Group desperate to restore Inter as one of the most prominent clubs in Europe. Since winning the treble under Jose Mourinho in 2010 the club has faded, finishing sixth, ninth, fifth, eighth and fourth in Serie A in recent seasons.
They are currently sixth under current manager Stafano Pioli, however significant improvement has been seen since his predecessor Frank de Boer was sacked in November last year.
The report suggests that Inter would be willing to heavily back Conte in the transfer market and have promised the Italian that he can pick his own signings. Among those linked with a move to the San Siro in recent days is Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez.
Inter Milan great Sandro Mazzola, who worked as the club’s sporting director for four years, said: ‘I am crazy about Alexis Sanchez. For me, he is perfect for this team because over time he has evolved and now scores several goals a season. Inter need someone like him.’
The Tuttosport story suggests that with Conte agreeing to a move they will now work on convincing Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich to let him go.
How likely it is they will be successful in their pursuit remains to be seen. Despite recent suggestions in Italy that Conte is homesick he has excelled since coming to Stamford Bridge with Chelsea currently 10 points clear at the top of the Premier League and appearing destined to win the title. The former Juventus manager agreed a three-year deal with the Blues worth £15m last April.