Chelsea fans will be under no illusions that their love affair with Antonio Conte isn't going to last forever.
Roman Abramovich's managers rarely enjoy a fairytale ending to their time at Stamford Bridge and on top of that, the former Juventus boss has made no secret of his homesickness living in England.
For his first season in charge, Conte's family didn't even join him in London, casting doubt upon whether he saw Chelsea as a long-term project.
That campaign yielded a Premier League title, though just as they did last term, Chelsea have endured a mixed start this time around with defeats to Burnley and Manchester City.
Speaking to Radio Uno at the end of September, Conte warned:
“I miss Italy, that’s beyond doubt. And in my mind, I will not be staying abroad for very long.
“Italy is my homeland. Once I have had some more nice experiences I will return to Italy, for sure. I don’t know when, but the goal is to do that.”
If reports in the Sun are to be believed, then that opportunity could be presenting itself very soon indeed.
Conte is a wanted man
The newspaper claim the 48-year-old is being targeted by Italy - who he quit in 2016 to take charge of the Blues - after their underwhelming World Cup qualifying campaign.
Gian Piero Ventura is under serious pressure and Gli Azzurri are still not guaranteed a spot in Russia as they will have to go through the play-offs.
Tensions came to a head when Italy were held to a 1-1 draw at home to Macedonia on Friday.
It's unclear whether chiefs are hoping to tempt him before or after the World Cup, but either way, it doesn't bode well for Chelsea.
Remarkably, he was given a pay-rise in the summer despite refusing to extend his contract, which speaks volumes about how desperate Chelsea are for him to stay.
Actions speak louder than words, however, and Conte made no secret of the fact that he wasn't entirely happy with the club's transfer dealings in the summer.
Nemanja Matic joined Manchester United, to be replaced by Danny Drinkwater, and key targets Romelu Lukaku, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Danilo, and Alex Sandro all eluded them.
Should Italy come calling, it would be very difficult for their former manager to turn them down.
Should Conte take the Italy job? Have your say in the comments.
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