Antonio Conte is in line to receive a bumper new contract and £200m transfer warchest if he commits his future to the club, according to the Times.
The broadsheet has claimed that Conte met Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich last week to discuss a number of matters as concerns grow over him staying at Stamford Bridge.
Conte is said to have grown increasingly frustrated over the Premier League champions’ glacial pursuit of top transfer targets this summer, with the likes of Romelu Lukaku, Alex Sandro and Tiemoue Bakayoko still yet to join the Londoners with the summer window set to open on 1st July.
That speculation has led to the Russian oligarch personally intervening in the talks over Conte’s transfer budget, new contract and other changes to Chelsea’s operational team.
After discussions reportedly took place between the pair last week, the Blues are now more confident that Conte will pen a fresh deal when he returns for pre-season training next month.
Conte has supposedly been in contact with other members of Chelsea’s backroom staff, such as technical director, Michael Emenalo, throughout his summer break but the Italian’s line of communication with Abramovich was thought to have been less of a regular occurrence.
That has now changed with Abramovich’s intervention in recent times, and it would not be unexpected to see Chelsea make significant in-roads in their hunt for new recruits as the 2017/18 campaign begins to loom into view.
Conte has already informed striker Diego Costa that he will not be part of his first-team plans moving forward, and the Spain international could possibly rejoin Atletico Madrid permanently before being loaned out for the first six months of the season due to their ongoing transfer ban.
Nemanja Matic too could be on his way out as reported interest from Manchester United gathers pace, and the departure of that key title winning duo would free up space for Lukaku and Bakayoko to jet in.
Lukaku is valued at around £100m by Everton, while Chelsea remain confident of tying up a £35m move for the Monaco midfielder and a possible world-record £61m deal for Juventus’ left-back Sandro.
Conte had been linked with the vacant managerial position at Inter Milan following Chelsea’s top flight title success, but those rumours ended with the appointment of former Roma boss Luciano Spalletti.