April 7, 2017

Conte Denies Chelsea Exit Talk  (Sky Sports)

Antonio ConteAntonio Conte has insisted he is happy at Chelsea following speculation linking him with a return to Italy.

The 47-year-old has enjoyed a sensational first season in England and is currently on course to secure the Premier League title, with the Blues seven points clear with eight matches to play.

Italian football agent Federico Pastorello suggested earlier this week that Conte could be opening to leaving Stamford Bridge in the summer even if Chelsea go on to win the title, with Inter Milan his most likely destination.

But Conte has dismissed those claims and said he has no ties with Pastorello.

"I read the interview about Federico Pastorello. I don't know him and I don't know why this person has spoken about me," Conte said ahead of Saturday's trip to Bournemouth.

"I think I stay here, I am happy to stay here and this is the most important thing.

"I don't like other people to speak for me. I have two more years on my contract with Chelsea, this is the truth.

"But it's normal to try and involve my name in this situation because I worked in Italy and I think they want me to go back to Italy."

Conte also voiced his surprise at reports suggesting Andrea Pirlo is being lined up to become his new assistant manager.

The Italian's current number two, Steve Holland, will leave Chelsea at the end of the season to join up with England on a full-time basis as Gareth Southgate's assistant.

Pirlo, who is currently playing for Major League Soccer side New York City, played under Conte during their time together at Juventus.

"I am listening to a lot of things, but Andrea is playing and he wants to continue playing. So I don't know why this situation is put to me," Conte said.

"It's important I stay focused on the present for my players.

"The present is more important than the future for all of us. I prefer to be focused on the present and try to finish this season, making it a great season."

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