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31st May 2019

Antonio Conte hired as manager of Inter Milan

Kyle Picknell

The boy is back in town

Antonio Conte is back, baby, after being appointed as manager of Serie A side Inter Milan following a year out from football.

The 49-year-old back-three enthusiast returns after being sacked as Chelsea manager at the end of the 2017/18 season, despite winning the FA Cup in his final game with the club. Bad omens for a certain Maurizio Sarri perhaps?

Conte’s last spell in his native Italy was a hugely successful one, as he led one of Inter’s main rivals Juventus – who he played for as a defensive midfielder – to three consecutive Scudetti from 2011 to 2014.

After that, Conte took over as manager of the Italian national team for Euro 2016, taking his country to the quarter-finals before they were knocked out on penalties by Germany.

Inter’s former manager, Luciano Spalletti, was only officially sacked on Thursday, suggesting that the club already had an agreement with the former Blues boss in place.

Spalletti did achieve some success with the Nerazzurri in his two-year spell though, leading them to the Champions League for the first time in six years this season.

The club, however, have greater ambitions and are now looking to Conte to close the 21 point gap that separated Inter in fourth from another dominant Juve team that finished top.

“A new chapter in my life is beginning, I’m really excited,” Conte said.

“I have chosen Inter because of the club it is, because of how ambitious it is. I was struck by the club’s transparency and the desire to bring Inter back to where it belongs.”

Meanwhile, Inter president Steven Zhang reiterated his belief that he is “sure Antonio Conte is one of the best coaches out there”.

“I’m certain he’ll help us achieve our objective and fulfil our mission, one which has always remained the same: to make this club one of the best in the world again,” he added.

According to the Independent, Conte joins on a three-year deal worth €10m (£8.8m) in his first year plus bonuses, with that base salary increasing if he remains for the 2020/21 season.