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Sampaoli distances himself from Chelsea links

SoccerNews in English Premier League 16 Feb 2016

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Jorge Sampaoli has distanced himself from speculation linking him with taking over at Chelsea, stating there is “nothing concrete” with the Premier League club.

After leading Chile to a first Copa America title in their history with a penalty shoot-out victory over Argentina last year, Sampaoli left his position as coach of the national team in January.

The 55-year-old – a nominee for 2015 FIFA World Coach of the Year award – has been touted as a Jose Mourinho’s long-term successor when Guus Hiddink leaves temporary charge of Chelsea at the end of the season.

Qatar are also reportedly interested in Sampaoli’s signature, but the Argentine says there is no truth to either rumour.

“It’s all speculation. There is nothing concrete. Today everybody is still competing, every club has a coach,” he told Ovacion Digital.

“I wouldn’t speak about something concrete when there is still a coach in charge. There is plenty of media speculation, but it’s not real.”

The former Chile coach admits he finds it unusual being out of work, but is looking for an opportunity where he can consistently challenge for silverware.

“I think the next step will surely be linked to a seductive project for me to try to create a legacy elsewhere,” Sampaoli added.

“I see it as an opportunity, regardless of where it is. We are always interested to revolutionise the place where we go, trying to change history.

“I have to choose the best sporting project. I have worked continuously for 14 years, so what is happening to me now is unnatural for me.

“I have to wait for a project that makes me excited for the future. The idea is to find a project where I can win things.

“I do not see myself coaching in a league thinking of finishing third or fourth.”

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