Former Brighton coach Roberto de Zerbi emerges for Chelsea job

May 27, 2024

As one of the top candidates for the Chelsea manager position that is now open, Roberto De Zerbi has now surfaced.

The former Brighton manager has been added to the Blues’ managerial shortlist along with Kieran McKenna of Ipswich, Enzo Maresca of Leicester, and Thomas Frank of Brentford.

It’s believed that Italian manager De Zerbi is eager to get back into management as soon as possible and wants to establish himself as Chelsea’s best candidate.

Even after leaving the Seagulls, Chelsea would still need to pay Brighton compensation—roughly £5 million—should Brighton decide to hire De Zerbi.

Chelsea still want a manager who can grow with the Stamford Bridge club’s new ownership but also want to stress test their decisions in a comprehensive process.

Brighton are also interested in recruiting Ipswich manager McKenna to replace De Zerbi, while Manchester United have tabs on the Northern Irishman too.

De Zerbi led Brighton to a sixth-place Premier League finish and an FA Cup semi-final in 2022/23, his first campaign with the Seagulls.

But at the end of this season, Brighton finished 11th as the campaign deteriorated due to tensions with chairman Tony Bloom.

Players during the training session at the American Express Elite Football Performance Centre during the 2022/23 season

In their last 11 games of the season, Brighton managed just two victories, and De Zerbi quit the south coast team.

Even though Brighton made it to the Europa League semifinals, the club and management were still looking to make changes.

After Graham Potter departed Brighton for Chelsea in September 2022, De Zerbi assumed leadership of the team.