Maurizio Sarri 'confirmed' as next Chelsea manager by Kalidou Koulibaly as star predicts 'nice football'

Dan Kilpatrick
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Maurizio Sarri 'confirmed' as next Chelsea manager by Kalidou Koulibaly as star predicts 'nice football'

Maurizio Sarri 'confirmed' as next Chelsea manager by Kalidou Koulibaly as star predicts 'nice football'

Napoli star Kalidou Koulibaly has urged Chelsea to give Maurizio Sarri time to succeed as their new manager.

Sarri’s agents have been holding talks with Chelsea in London and he is expected to be appointed as soon as the club can find an agreement with boss Antonio Conte, who would be due £9.5millon in compensation if he were sacked now.

It is believed the Italian would prefer the payment to be a single, one-off sum, whereas Chelsea’s policy is to deliver a weekly salary.

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Sarri is still under contract at Napoli, even though the Serie A club made Carlo Ancelotti their new coach last month. Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has made positive noises about agreeing a fee with Chelsea to release Sarri from his deal.

After helping Senegal kick off their World Cup campaign with a 2-1 win over Poland in Moscow on Tuesday, Koulibaly, 26, backed Sarri to succeed at Stamford Bridge.

The centre-back said: “You can expect nice football because he’s a very good coach. It’s disappointing that he is leaving like this.

“We have now a big coach and we know we can win something with him. I hope he [Sarri] can win something with Chelsea.

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“When a person like this comes to a new club, he needs time.

“They have to give him time because he will suit the football of Chelsea. I think Chelsea fans will enjoy the style of football he plays.

“At Napoli, we enjoyed it so much and the supporters enjoyed it so much, too. I think at Chelsea it will be the same.”

Meanwhile, West Ham midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate said Senegal cannot relax, despite taking a massive step towards the last 16 with the victory over Poland in Moscow’s Spartak Stadium.

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“Don’t forget it’s not finished,” he said. “We have one day off tomorrow to rest and after we start our job again, we have another very hard game against Japan and we need to take points from this game.”

Kouyate is the Senegal captain but he was a surprise omission from the starting XI and only appeared as a substitute for the final few minutes.

Asked if he was injured, he said: “No, I just need to be a bit fitter, 100 per cent. Maybe next week I’m fitter.”