Now with Chelsea, Antonio Conte managed the Italian national team from August 2014 to July 2016.

By 90Min
November 14, 2017

Alessandro Del Piero has backed Antonio Conte to return to the Italy managerial hot seat after a 'great period' with Chelsea.

The Azzurri legend was speaking in the wake of his national side's shock failure to overturn their World Cup play-off first leg deficit against Sweden on Monday night in an interview with Sport360 (h/t the London Evening Standard).

Conte managed the senior Italian national team from August 2014 to July 2016 before he headed to Stamford Bridge to take up the reigns of the reigning Premier League champions.

The 49-year-old's future in west London has been a constant source of speculation this term after he made comments about one day heading back to Italy, and Del Piero admitted he would love to see Conte enter the dug out of his national side once more if he does head home.

The ex-forward said: "He did great with Juve of course and a great job with the national team.

"We would love to have him back in Italy, of course, because he is a great coach. He would improve any team and this is what he did with Chelsea last season and what he did with Juve as well.

"We had some problems and he fixed it, then won the title. He has some amazing qualities and that's why he's coaching the best teams in the world. I hope he will have a great period with Chelsea and then maybe one day come back."

Italy failed to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in 60 years after they lost their play-off encounter with Sweden 1-0 on aggregate.

Gian Piero Ventura's side went gung-ho against Blagult at San Siro on Monday evening as they bid to overturn the surprise 1-0 loss in Stockholm four days earlier, but could not breach a tough Swedish defence.

Conte has been joined by the likes of Carlo Ancelotti, Max Allegri and Maurizio Sarri as the early frontrunners to replace Ventura at the helm, with the 69-year-old leaving his post in the midst of their epic failure.

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