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Chelsea in Advanced Talks with Leicester's Maresca as Pochettino Replacement

Chelsea in Advanced Talks with Leicester's Maresca as Pochettino Replacementillustration

Football Club is currently engaged in advanced discussions with Leicester City's Enzo regarding his potential appointment as the successor to former manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Enzo Maresca, aged 44, assumed managerial duties at Leicester City in June 2023, leading the team to immediate promotion to the Premier League by clinching the Championship title in his inaugural season.

Maresca has signaled his interest in a move to Chelsea, with negotiations ongoing between the two clubs. This development follows Ipswich Town manager withdrawing from contention for the Chelsea role.

While former Brighton manager Roberto de Zerbi and Brentford's Thomas Frank remain under consideration, there's a prevailing consensus within Chelsea's hierarchy favoring Maresca's appointment.

Leicester City is reportedly seeking compensation in the range of £8m-£10m for Maresca, who previously served as Pep Guardiola's assistant at Manchester City, contributing to his coaching pedigree.

The outcome of the potential deal hinges upon Chelsea's willingness to meet Leicester's compensation demands. However, Chelsea is determined to finalize a compensation package in the imminent days.

Maresca emerged as the primary choice from a shortlist of four candidates, as evaluated by sporting directors Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart, with co-controlling owner Behdad Eghbali playing a pivotal role in the decision-making process.

The selection process involved a thorough assessment, incorporating data analysis, interviews, and background checks to ascertain the most suitable candidate.

Chelsea's decision-makers believe Maresca possesses the requisite tactical acumen and managerial prowess to integrate effectively within the club's structure. His familiarity with Chelsea's squad and his tenure as Guardiola's assistant garnered positive appraisal from the board.

Moreover, Chelsea aims to replicate the success of former Guardiola protege Mikel Arteta at Arsenal, underlining their aspiration to establish an elite managerial setup capable of optimizing the club's substantial resources.

Meanwhile, Kieran McKenna, the former Manchester United assistant manager who guided Ipswich Town to promotion, is being linked with managerial vacancies at Brighton and a potential return to Manchester United in the event of Erik ten Hag's dismissal.

Ipswich Town is keen on retaining McKenna but may face challenges as the manager's contract extends until 2027, with any interested club obligated to pay a compensation fee of at least £4m.

In summary, Chelsea's pursuit of Maresca underscores their strategic approach to managerial appointments, while McKenna's future remains subject to speculation amidst managerial vacancies in English football.

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