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"It would be the best thing" - Roberto Mancini tips Emerson Palmieri to make Serie A return

Roberto Mancini, manager of the Italy national team, has advised Chelsea defender, Emerson Palmieri, to return to the Serie A in January.

Emerson, 26, has been heavily linked with a move away from Stamford Bridge during the past month, with Napoli reportedly closing in on a loan move for their 'dream target'.

In an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport, the former Manchester City boss said: "It would be ideal for him[Emerson] to join an ambitious Serie A club, it would be the best thing."

Emerson's agent recently confirmed that there have been no official bids for the Chelsea defender amid speculation surrounding the Italian's future at Stamford Bridge.

The likes of Juventus and Inter have vested interest in his signature as well, with Emerson's current deal at Chelsea set to expire next summer.

Since arriving in west London in January 2018, Emerson has failed to nail down a spot in the first team, and has had to settle for a mere back-up role under Maurizio Sarri and Frank Lampard.

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The Italian has made just nine appearances for the Blues so far this season, playing second fiddle to first-team regular and big-money summer signing, Ben Chilwell.

However, he's done well as a back-up at left-back, with a few encouraging performances in the Champions League, Carabao Cup and the FA Cup.

Emerson is understood to have had talks with Lampard about his future and a decision regarding a potential move is expected to be made soon.

There might be a twist in the tale, as outcast Marcos Alonso edges closer to a loan move to La Liga leaders Atlético Madrid.

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