Conte takes Chelsea training amid doubts over future

Despite strong speculation the Italian would be sacked by the club, Chelsea's return to training has been overseen by Antonio Conte.

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte   -  Getty Images

Antonio Conte presided over Chelsea's return for pre-season training on Monday, despite persistent speculation over the Italian's future.

Conte was widely expected to be fired at the end of last term, in which the Blues surrendered its Premier League title with a limp fifth-place finish, although it did win the FA Cup.

Maurizio Sarri was said to have been lined up to take over at Stamford Bridge and it appeared to be a matter of time before a deal was confirmed when Napoli sacked him in May for taking too long to decide on his future.

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But, a contractual dispute with Napoli has reportedly prevented Chelsea from snapping Sarri up, leaving Conte at the helm after he regularly challenged the hierarchy's authority with comments about its transfer policy in the most recent campaign. 

And, Omnisport understands that Conte was present at Cobham on Monday as Chelsea got its preparations for the 2018-19 season underway. Conte, who is now into the final year of his contract, also spent much of the weekend at Chelsea's base.

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