Roberto De Zerbi ‘closing in on shock return to management with European giants’ after ex-Brighton boss missed out on Man United and Chelsea jobs

  • De Zerbi left Brighton at the end of the season and had been touted for a top job
  • He held talks with United, but the club instead opted to stick with Erik ten Hag
  • LISTEN to It’s All Kicking Off! Ian Ladyman, Chris Sutton and the Mail Sport team give their tournament predictions 

Robert De Zerbi is closing in on a return to the dugout after leaving Brighton at the end of the season. 

The Italian and the Seagulls parted ways after two years last month, with a difference in vision for the future believed to be the reason why De Zerbi won’t be in charge next season.

Brighton are close to appointing 31-year-old Fabian Hurzeler as his replacement, with his current club, St Pauli, and the Premier League side progressing in negotiations.

De Zerbi’s next destination has been of high interest, with many touting him to take a top job, but he is yet to find a home after missing out on the Manchester United job following talks.

According to The Sun, however, he is nearing a return to management, which is expected to be in France.

Roberto De Zerbi is closing in on a shock return to management after missing out on the Manchester United job

He could be set to take over at Marseille, with a negotiations between the two parties reported to be underway

He could be set to take over at Marseille, with a negotiations between the two parties reported to be underway

United opted against employing a new manager and will instead stick with Erik ten Hag

United opted against employing a new manager and will instead stick with Erik ten Hag

Reports suggest the 45-year-old is nearing an agreement to take over at Marseille in Ligue 1, after being linked to a number of other clubs.

Marseille finished eighth in the league table last season, finishing the campaign under Jean-Louis Gasset, who took over from Gennaro Gattuso in February.

It was a disappointing year for the French side, who had the year before come third and were hoping to push on and look to mount a form of challenge for the league title.

Gasset’s deal only ran until the end of the season, with the 70-year-old announcing his retirement at the end of his contract.

It is suggested that the club have sent a proposal to De Zerbi, with contract negotiations underway ahead of a potential appointment.

Having taken Brighton into Europe for the first time in their history, De Zerbi was linked with the likes of Chelsea, Liverpool and Manchester United at the end of the season.

Chelsea and Liverpool were without managers but instead turned to Enzo Maresca and Arne Slot respectively, while United decided to stick with Erik ten Hag rather than jumping ship.

De Zerbi could replace 70-year-old Jean-Louis Gasset, who retired at the end of the season

De Zerbi could replace 70-year-old Jean-Louis Gasset, who retired at the end of the season

De Zerbi waved goodbye to Brighton at the end of the season after a disagreement over the direction of the club

De Zerbi waved goodbye to Brighton at the end of the season after a disagreement over the direction of the club

United sounded out De Zerbi via intermediaries in May in addition to speaking to agents representing Kieran McKenna, Thomas Frank, Thomas Tuchel and Mauricio Pochettino.

United conducted a post-season reviews and opted to stick with Ten Hag, with the Dutchman delivering the FA Cup in the final game of the season despite leading the Red Devils to their worst-ever Premier League finish.

It is also understood that at least two candidates to replace the Dutchman were left less-than-impressed about the potential terms they were presented with.

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