Chelsea’s plans to appoint Maurizio Sarri as their new manager before the return of their first team squad have hit a fresh delay.
Despite having already appointed the Italian’s successor in Carlo Ancelotti, Napoli are still holding out on a contract clause to prevent their former manager from poaching their best players once he has finally got his feet under the desk at Stamford Bridge.
However, the Blues have been linked to a number of other players from around Serie A and Europe’s other leagues. If it comes down to a choice between bringing in Sarri to replace Antonio Conte or signing Kalidou Koulibaly at centre-back, the decision is only going to go one way.
Juventus defender Danielle Rugani has been tipped as a major transfer target instead of the Senegal international while Aleksandr Golovin is set to move to Stamford Bridge from CSKA Moscow this summer once the World Cup 2018 is over.
The Mirror report that Napoli are insistent that a clause is put in place to protect themselves from the risk of losing players to Chelsea once Sarri is installed as manager.
Dries Mertens, Elseid Hysaj and Faouzi Ghoulam have all been linked with the Blues in recent transfer windows and could all be off limits if the agreement is put in place.
Manchester City are expected to sign Jorginho from Napoli this summer and the Serie A runners up do not want to lose any of their other key players if they can help it.