Jorge Sampaoli focused on Chile job despite rumoured interest from Chelsea


Chile coach Jorge Sampaoli has played down speculation linking him with a move to Chelsea.

According to reports, the Argentine is among those being considered to take over at Stamford Bridge next summer, when Guus Hiddink’s interim spell in charge comes to an end.

The Dutchman will lead the Blues until the end of the season after the departure of Jose Mourinho, but the Blues are in the hunt for a permanent manager.

Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone is believed to be the leading candidate, but Sampaoli has emerged as a possible option for the club.

The 55-year-old has yet to manage outside South America but has a reputation as an innovative, attacking coach in the style of his mentor, Marcelo Bielsa.

But Sampaoli says he remains committed to the Chile job, pending any major change in the managerial structure above him.

“My future depends on the elections for a new president [for the head of Chile’s football federation], on January 4,” he told AS.

Shaun Botterill – FIFA
Staying put? Sampaoli is waiting to see what happens with Chile

“It depends on whether the new president likes our project.

“Before listening to offers, I will first present my new project for the Chile team. That is what I say to all the clubs who have contacted me.”

Sampaoli did, however, admits that his ideal job would be managing Argentina one day.

“The Argentina job is a dream, because it’s my country’s team,” he added.

“I dreamed about playing for Argentina as a player but I never got there.

“I will never stop dreaming about taking charge some day.”

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