Turin-based newspaper Tuttosport report that Chelsea’s billionaire owner had reached an agreement with Barcelona to seal a stunning deal for the Brazilian for a mammoth €180 million (£155.5m). But in a meeting over dinner just after the 2-1 victory over Stoke City last Saturday, Conte believed to have informed Abramovich that he wants to go after other transfer targets this summer and not Neymar.
Neymar is currently contracted to the Camp Nou until 2021 and is reported to have a £170m release clause.
Tuttosport claim that Abramovich is now increasingly concerned by Inter Milan’s strong interest in the Chelsea boss and is, therefore, keen to bring in a marquee player to Stamford Bridge to keep the Italian happy.
The Serie A giants are willing to offer Conte a mouth-watering £13million-a-year deal to double the amount he earns at Chelsea. Last week, several reports claimed that Chelsea want Antonio Conte to sign a new deal but the 47-year-old Italian is not at all satisfied with the club’s transfer policy.
As a matter of fact, only one of Conte’s recommendations to Chelsea’s board – N’Golo Kante – was sanctioned last summer, while the Italian was also frustrated to see that no players were brought in during the January transfer window, despite Branislav Ivanovic, John Obi Mikel and Oscar being allowed to leave.
Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan claimed on Tuesday that he spoke with Antonio Conte last summer over a switch to Stamford Bridge, but Chelsea failed to meet Roma’s £32 million valuations.