Chelsea's love for Italian coaches: A legacy of success

Enzo Maresca. Image credit: Getty Images

Chelsea's love for Italian coaches: A legacy of success

Eric Munene 07:05 - 30.05.2024

Chelsea are close to appointing yet another Italian coach in Enzo Maresca but how have the other ones before him performed in the Stamford Bridge hotseat?

Chelsea Football Club, known for its rich history and diverse managerial talent, has seen its fair share of Italian maestros take the helm and guide the team to success.

From tactical geniuses to charismatic leaders, these managers have left an indelible mark on the club's legacy.

As they edge closer to unveiling yet another Italian coach in Enzo Maresca, here are the tacticians from Italy that have graced the Stamford Bridge dugout.

Gianluca Vialli (1998-2000)

Gianluca Vialli, a former Juventus and Italy striker, took charge of Chelsea in 1998, becoming the club's player-manager. Under his leadership, Chelsea won the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1998 and the FA Cup in 2000, marking the beginning of a new era of success for the Blues. Vialli's attacking style of play and man-management skills endeared him to the Chelsea faithful, making him one of the most beloved figures in the club's history.

Claudio Ranieri (2000-2004)

Known as the "Tinkerman" for his propensity to rotate his squad, Claudio Ranieri brought stability and tactical acumen to Chelsea during his tenure. Despite not winning any major trophies, Ranieri laid the groundwork for future success, nurturing young talents like John Terry and Frank Lampard while instilling a resilient mentality within the team. His contribution to Chelsea's rise cannot be understated, setting the stage for greater triumphs to come.

Carlo Ancelotti (2009-2011)

Carlo Ancelotti arrived at Chelsea with a glittering resume, having won numerous titles with AC Milan, including two UEFA Champions League trophies. During his time at Stamford Bridge, Ancelotti led Chelsea to a historic Premier League and FA Cup double in the 2009-2010 season, playing an attractive brand of attacking football that thrilled fans. His calm demeanor and tactical astuteness made him a revered figure among players and supporters alike.

Roberto Di Matteo (2012)

Roberto Di Matteo's appointment as interim manager in 2012 proved to be a turning point in Chelsea's history. Taking over from Andre Villas-Boas mid-season, Di Matteo revitalised the team and led them on an unforgettable journey in the UEFA Champions League. Against all odds, Chelsea reached the final, where they faced Bayern Munich at their own backyard, the Allianz Arena. In a dramatic match that went to penalties, Chelsea emerged victorious, clinching their first-ever Champions League title. Di Matteo's tactical astuteness and ability to inspire his players played a pivotal role in this historic triumph.

In addition to their European success, Di Matteo also guided Chelsea to victory in the FA Cup earlier that season, completing the coveted FA Cup-Champions League double. Despite his tenure being brief, Di Matteo's impact on Chelsea's history is immense, etching his name into the annals of the club's folklore as one of its most beloved manager.

Antonio Conte (2016-2018)

Antonio Conte's arrival at Chelsea heralded a new era of dominance in the Premier League. Employing his trademark 3-4-3 formation, Conte guided Chelsea to the Premier League title in his debut season, breaking records along the way with a remarkable 13-game winning streak. His passion on the touchline and tactical nous rejuvenated the squad, propelling Chelsea to the summit of English football once again.

Maurizio Sarri (2018-2019)

Maurizio Sarri brought his "Sarri-ball" philosophy to Chelsea, emphasising possession-based football and intricate passing patterns. Despite facing skepticism initially, Sarri guided Chelsea to a third-place finish in the Premier League and won the UEFA Europa League in his debut season. His tactical innovation and dedication to his principles left a lasting impression on the club and its players.

Will Chelsea's new Italian manager Enzo Maresca bag the league in his first season and continue with Chelsea's fairy tale with Italian managers?