Chelsea began a Premier League managers' tribunal on Thursday, with hopes of resolving Antonio Conte's compensation claim for a £9 million severance package relating to his contract with the Stamford Bridge side.
The former Blues boss was sacked last summer despite having one year remaining on his contract. As a result, the Italian is asking to be paid in full the wages he would have earned during that final season in London.
Chelsea's case will dispute Conte's version of events, citing a breach of contract due to some of the former Italy national team manager's
Diego Costa left Chelsea for £57m in January 2018 after the striker's relationship with Conte broke down, with the latter informing the former via text message that he was no longer wanted by the team.
The club will point to that gesture as an example of the trainer's lack of professionalism.
A three-person panel has been appointed in an undisclosed location and a verdict is expected soon, although there is no time frame set for the trio of individuals to come to a decision.
Lawyers have been working on their cases for a number of months and, if no suitable solution can be reached, the matter will move on to the High Court.
It is unclear as to what the outcome might be of the tribunal, which could run for up to two weeks before moving on to legal processes outside of a football context.
Conte remains out of work after leaving Chelsea and has been sighted at several Premier League matches, as he splits his time between Italy and London.
Some consider Conte's time at Chelsea as a success, as he won the Premier League and FA Cup in his
However, his tenure at the club was still beset by public complaints