Ventura plays down Italy national job links

Giampiero Ventura - cropped
The veteran Torino coach says there is no truth in reports linking him with the Azzurri job after Antonio Conte departs for Chelsea in July

Giampiero Ventura has played down claims he will be appointed Antonio Conte's successor as coach of the Italian national team after the upcoming European Championship.

Conte will depart his position to join Premier League outfit Chelsea ahead of the 2016/17 season, with Torino's Ventura reported to be the frontrunner to get the job.

But while Ventura accepted he was "pleased" to be linked to the post, he insisted there is "nothing" in the reports.

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"I am pleased to be linked with the Italy job, as would any coach," Ventura told Tuttomercatoweb.

"However, there is concretely nothing in it with regards to the national team. We are talking about nothing."