Chelsea official pictured talking to Antonio Conte's agent during Italy friendly

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Rumours suggesting Antonio Conte will become Chelsea manager next season have been bolstered as a club official was pictured talking to the Italian's agent during Italy's friendly with Spain on Friday night.

According to the Daily Mirror, the Blues' player liaison officer, Gary Staker, was sat alongside Daniele Conte whilst his brother took charge against Vicente del Bosque's side in Udine.

Italian journalist Alessandro Alciato tweeted the snapshot of Staker in the stands prior to kick off (see below).


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Staker has a history of working with Italian managers at Chelsea having been Claudio Ranieri's translator when he first joined the club in 2000.

And with representatives from both parties clearly getting on well, it seems almost inevitable that Conte will succeed Guus Hiddink next season.

However, it would suit both sides to hold off any announcement to avoid distracting Chelsea's players, much like how Manchester City have struggled since Pep Guardiola was confirmed as Manuel Pellegrini's successor.

Conte has already confirmed he will step down as Italy boss following Euro 2016 but will be hoping for a strong performance in France.

Gli Azzurri drew 1-1 with Spain on Friday night, the home side taking the lead through Lorenzo Insigne but conceding just two minutes later thanks to an Aritz Aduriz goal.

Conte's Italy take on World Cup holders Germany next Tuesday in what will likely prove a more testing friendly.

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