Carlo Ancelotti is set to be given the job of reviving the fortunes of Italy’s national team, according to reports on Tuesday.
Ancelotti, who was sacked by Bayern Munich last September, met with Italian Football Federation (FIGC) commissioner Roberto Fabbricini and sub-commissioner Alessandro Costacurta in a Rome hotel on Monday, Corriere dello Sport reported.
And Sky Sport Italia said the 58-year-old has been offered a two-year position, which is likely to be less lucrative than his previous contract with the German champions.
Italy have been without a permanent coach since Gian Piero Ventura was sacked after they failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in 60 years following defeat by Sweden in a two-legged playoff in November.
Ancelotti, who has also managed Chelsea, Real Madrid and Juventus, has three Champions League titles to his name as a coach. He has also won the league in Italy, France, Germany and England.
The FIGC budget for a new coach and his staff is five million euros ($6.1 million) per year, which would be a big drop from what Ancelotti earned at Bayern Munich.
Costacurta is reported to have offered Ancelotti, who has also been linked with former club Chelsea and the soon-to-be-vacant job at Arsenal, a free hand in choosing his staff.
Ancelotti’s son Davide, who was his assistant at Bayern, could play a role as well as former stars such as Andrea Pirlo, Gianluigi Buffon and Paolo Maldini.
Costacurta, who was appointed to find a successor to Ventura, set a dateline of May 20 for the appointment of a new coach.
Among the other names touted were Zenit St Petersburg coach Roberto Mancini, Chelsea boss Antonio Conte and former Leicester coach Claudio Ranieri, now in charge of French club Nantes.
Italy Under-21 coach Di Biagio, 46, has been holding the position on an interim basis.
Wenger announced on Friday that his 22-year stay as Arsenal manager will conclude at the end of the season.
But Wilson, who made over 300 appearances for Arsenal between 1963 and 1974 and worked as a goalkeeping coach under Wenger, thinks the 68-year-old Frenchman will not quit football.
“I know before that France have asked him (to become manager),” Wilson told BBC 5 Live’s Sportsweek programme.
“I have got this thing that he may go back to his home country and really bring around change in the French national side.”
David Seaman, another former Arsenal goalkeeper, agreed that Wenger will choose not to call time on his career.
“I hope he goes on holiday, he looks like he needs a good break,” Seaman said.
“But he has a passion for football, he’s totally obsessed with it.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he turned up at another club or in international football.”
‘He was extraordinary’
An emotional Bob Wilson tells @NickyAACampbell how Arsene Wenger helped him ‘through difficult times for him and his wife’
— BBC Radio 5 live (@bbc5live) April 20, 2018
A host of names have already been suggested as possible candidates to succeed Wenger at the Emirates Stadium.
Former Arsenal midfielder Patrick Vieira – currently head coach at New York City – ex-Barcelona boss Luis Enrique, Germany manager Joachim Low, Celtic’s Brendan Rodgers and Italian pair Carlo Ancelotti and Massimiliano Allegri are among those who have been linked.
“I wouldn’t think we’ll know before the end of the season, I don’t think that’s the Arsenal way,” Wilson said.
“But hopefully it will be early in the close season so the players are understanding.
“I was looking at Joachim Low but he has got a contract with the German national team.
“It would appear at this moment that it could be Luis Enrique who was at Barcelona and has taken a year out.
“He is available and he did achieve at Barcelona, although he did lose his job after a short time.”
Seaman added: “I want a manager to come in who is tried and trusted and already proven.
“He needs a big stature to go in there and make demands.
“If he doesn’t get them he has to say ‘right, I’m not coming’ because the team needs a big overhaul.”
Despite winning 18 trophies in 12 years at United, including five Premier League titles and the Champions League in 2008, Carrick was often overlooked at international level.
He won 34 caps in a 14-year international career between 2001 and 2015, but only played one game at a major tournament and said his experience at the South Africa World Cup in 2010 left a lasting negative effect.
“I was finding it hard going away with England. I didn’t mind going away with United on pre-season for the three weeks or whatever but going away with England it was almost depressing in a way, it made me really down,” Carrick told the BBC’s Premier League Show.
“It came to a point after South Africa I thought I can’t do that again. People will say ‘pull yourself together and be grateful for it’.
“I understood the privileged position I was in, but I just found it so hard and I couldn’t deal with it anymore. I was depressed at times, I told the FA please don’t pick me.”
Carrick, 36, has signalled his intention to retire at the end of the season and is expected to join Jose Mourinho‘s coaching staff at Old Trafford.