GOODBYE to a workaholic, hello to a chain-smoking jazz fan who unwinds by reading crime novels.
Maurizio Sarri is Italian like the man he is replacing Antonio Conte and both have a similarly driven approach on the training ground.
AFP – Getty Maurizio Sarri puffs away but his main problem after moving from Napoli to Stamford Bridge might be the no-smoking rule
But the latest in a long line of Chelsea managers is considered far more politically aware and sophisticated, even if he tends to pace up and down the dugout with a plastic fag hanging out of his mouth during matches.
The biggest problem he is going to encounter with Chelsea is the fact that Stamford Bridge is a no smoking stadium.
Gianluca Motti of Gazetta dello Sport is part of The Italian media who have explored every aspect of Sarri’s life, both professional and personal, and believe he will be the man to get Chelsea’s dressing room pulling with the manager instead of pushing against him.
That was Conte’s downfall. Taking on the players and the club in constant snipes over transfers makes the players he bought feel like they are no good and it winds up the people who have paid for them. There will only be one winner in that fight.
Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri gives Juventus fans the middle finger ahead of clash
Getty – Contributor The Italian media rate Maurizio Sarri as the ideal man to bring Chelsea back together after they looked in turmoil last season – a year after winning the title Cesc Fabregas enjoys holiday break with stunning wife and family with Chelsea ace due back for pre-season on Thursday
For someone who needs 60 a day just to function, Sarri has a surprisingly level hand. The prime example is the way he persuaded sulking striker Gonzalo Higuain to stay at Napoli after taking over from Rafa Benitez in 2015.
The Argentinian was had clashed with the manager, Napoli had missed out on Champions League football and Higuain was in a right strop.
But after just a week of working for arch-diplomat Sarri, he was putty in the new man’s hand and stayed another year before an irresistible bid of £77million came in from Juventus.
Chelsea supporters will hope he can weave the same kind of magic with those disillusioned big name players amid the simmering discontent of Conte’s fractious reign.
PA:Empics Sport Antonio Conte was seen as a figure of disunity at the Bridge and irked club bosses
Higuain will now tell anyone who cares to listen that Sarri is one of the best coaches he has ever worked for.
Sarri himself puts his people skills down to the fact he worked outside the football bubble until late in life.
A career on the bustling foreign exchange markets managing large portfolios of cash for uber wealthy clients teaches anyone how to schmooz and get the best deal done over the line in high pressure situations.
Spells on the financial markets in London, Zurich and Luxembourg improved his English which as the most widely spoken language in the world makes getting the message across that much easier.