Ancelotti replaces Sarri as Napoli coach
Carlo Ancelotti has reached agreement to take over as Napoli coach ending Maurizio Sarri’s three-year reign at the Serie A club, according to reports in Italy on Wednesday.
Italian Ancelotti — who was sacked by Bayern Munich last September — hammered out a deal Wednesday after a series of meetings with Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis in Rome.
The pair talked late into Tuesday night and then had a three-hour meeting on Wednesday morning.
The 58-year-old Ancelotti is said to have agreed a two-year contract with an option for a third with the Serie A runners-up.
However, the official announcement may not be made until June 1 as details have to be sorted out concerning Sarri’s position, Gazzetta Dello Sport reported.
It would mark Ancelotti’s first job in Italian football since leaving AC Milan in 2009 after leading the club to a Scudetto and two Champions League titles.
The former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich boss is understood to have agreed a salary worth 6.5 million euro ($7.6 million) a year with an option of a third year.
Ancelotti has won three Champions League titles as well as the league in Italy, France, Germany and England.
Ancelotti’s son Davide and his son-in-law Mino Fulco will also be on the Napoli coaching staff.
Sarri, who has spent the past three seasons at the San Paolo Stadium, has two more years remaining on his contract which runs until 2020.
The 59-year-old former banker guided Napoli to second place in Serie A for the second time since taking over, and this season they achieved a club record 91 points in a season.
But the club’s film producer boss De Laurentiis lost patience with Sarri’s indecision over his future.
Napoli could sack Sarri for 500,000 euros ($585,00) before the end of this month, but if another club wants to sign him during that period they would have to pay his eight-million-euro ($9.4 million) release clause.
– ‘Target not reached’ –
Zenit St Petersburg and Chelsea are both reported to be interested in signing former Empoli coach Sarri, and Napoli would prefer they pay the release clause, so do not want to sack him.
“In life everything comes to an end,” said Sarri after his final match last Sunday, a 2-1 win which relegated Crotone to Serie B.
“Sometimes it’s better to finish stories while they are good.
“We have not reached the target, but the journey has been fantastic.”
He added: “The situation is complicated. You can’t say you’re ready to go and try again with this squad when you don’t know whether everyone will remain here.
“I don’t know if the club will manage to keep the players who have release clauses when offers will come in from big clubs.
“What I do think is that I could not go directly to another Italian team, and that if I had to make a change I would prefer to go abroad.”
Despite having never won a trophy at any level, Sarri has been linked with a move to Chelsea where Antonio Conte’s future remains unclear.
However, there are reports Sarri is considering an offer from Zenit Saint Petersburg.
The Russian club have been without a coach since Roberto Mancini returned to take over the Italian national team.
Ancelotti had been linked with the Italy coaching job before Mancini’s appointment.