Antonio Conte will reject the chance to meet with the Italian Football Federation to discuss the vacant managerial position with the Azzurri and says he is intent upon seeing out his contract at Chelsea, thrusting the onus on the club to sack him if change is desired in the summer.
Conte's place at the Chelsea helm is in doubt as the Premier League champions sit fourth in the table, having slipped 18 points adrift of leaders Manchester City following Wednesday's 3-0 defeat at home to Bournemouth.
Conte's Blues are now 18 points behind runaway leaders Manchester City and fighting for a top-four finish in order to qualify for the Champions League. I don't know why there's speculation about my future. My intention, will and desire is to respect the contract.
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"But perhaps he's forgotten that I still have 18 months on my contract with Chelsea". "I don't see a problem with this". I didn't expect anything to happen and, as it turns out, Chelsea have gone on to make a great signing. I'm not interested in this.
"I trust in my work".
Next up for the Italian is a trip to Watford on Monday night, but who will he choose to start?
"We will call Di Biagio and we will speak with him about his role as interim national coach".
The report claims that the 47-year-old's limited English and preference for a Latin lifestyle are the primary reasons behind his desire to avoid a move to the Premier League.
When it was suggested that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger - who has enjoyed FA Cup success in three of the past four seasons but not won the league since 2004 - has faced plenty of recent criticism, Conte replied: "Yes but after 20 years, not after one year and a half".
"Olivier is coming (back) from a muscular injury, he was out for 50 days before he played 15 minutes in the game against Swansea (for Arsenal, on Tuesday)". I like to have the pressure and I like this type of situation.
"I don't understand why it is only around me".
"I will give it my best shot to be in Russian Federation".
"I have always kept myself in very good shape and I live a healthy lifestyle, so the fitness side of the game will not be an issue to me".
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