Ranieri 'not convinced' by Conte's homesickness and expects Chelsea stay

Antonio Conte Chelsea
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The Blues boss has admitted that he intends to head back to Italy at some stage, but a predecessor at Stamford Bridge does not see that happening soon

Antonio Conte has spoken of his intention to leave Chelsea and return to Italy at some stage, but Claudio Ranieri is “not convinced” by his homesickness.

The Blues boss, who guided his side to the Premier League title in 2016-17, recently told RadioUno: “I miss it, that’s beyond doubt. Italy is my homeland, so once I have had some good experiences, formative experiences, important and life-changing experiences, I’ll be back. I don’t know when but that’s the aim.”

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It has been suggested that a departure from Stamford Bridge could be made as early as 2018, with Conte being linked with several Serie A posts and a possible return to the helm of the Italian national side.

Ranieri doubts a move will be made, though, with the former Chelsea manager of the opinion that the English top-flight remains the best place for the world’s leading coaches.

The ex-Leicester boss, who is now in charge of Ligue 1 side Nantes, told Gazzetta dello Sport’s Extra Time: “The Premier League remains the top, and I’m not convinced by Conte’s homesickness.

“Maybe he was expecting a different transfer campaign, but for a few years now [Roman] Abramovich hasn’t been doing crazy spending.

Manchester United and Manchester City have made great signings, so I imagine it’s more draining for Antonio to be fighting on two fronts with the same players.”

Claudio Ranieri Antonio Conte Chelsea exit not convinced

While one of his Chelsea successors remains very much in a job in west London, another finds himself out of the dugout following a difficult stint at Bayern Munich.

Carlo Ancelotti has been relieved of his duties at the Allianz Arena and Ranieri believes that his fellow Italian paid the price for taking a position at a club in need of a complete overhaul.

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He added when pressed for his opinion on Ancelotti’s dismissal: “Welcome to the club!

“I don’t know the details, but maybe Carlo left some players out to get a reaction from them.

“He paid for it with his job, but in the long run I think Bayern need to be overhauled because certain players have been there too long and don’t have the same motivation.”