Antonio Conte seemed destined to lose his job at Chelsea after failing to qualify for the Champions League.
That, after all, is just how the club works. His poor relationship with many players, furthermore, heightened the likelihood of the Italian being moved along to make way for Maurizio Sarri, who managed Napoli to their record Serie A points total last season.
One player he had fallen out with was Willian, who made his feelings toward his manager hilariously clear by covering him up with emojis on an Instagram story celebrating Chelsea’s success over Manchester United in the FA Cup final.
Even with Conte set to leave, it seemed as if Willian would follow, regardless of who took over the reigns at Chelsea, as Man United and Barcelona both expressed interest in his services.
But the sight of Conte returning to pre-season training for the 2018/19 campaign has seemingly confirmed a couple of things: that, amazingly, Chelsea have kept Conte on as manager and, secondly, that Willian will seek a new club immediately.
If you are starting to think United’s transfer window has been underwhelming, take solace in the notion that Chelsea, with just a month until the new season, have made the grand total of zero signings so far. Pinching Willian away from them would be perhaps even sweeter than Nemanja Matic last year.