Chelsea close in on Sarri and aim to beat Manchester City to Jorginho

• Napoli president says Sarri’s move is in ‘hands of his lawyers’
• Jorginho has indicated preference for move to London over City

The Napoli president, Aurelio De Laurentiis, has claimed Maurizio Sarri’s move to Chelsea is edging closer and is “in the hands of his lawyers”, with Napoli’s former manager in line to be followed to Stamford Bridge by the midfielder Jorginho in what could amount to a £57.5m joint outlay.

The Premier League club have been in a state of flux since winning the FA Cup at the end of last season. There has been intense haggling through the summer over compensation payoffs due to the various parties – the current Chelsea head coach, Antonio Conte, would seek payment for the final year of his contract – and that has made for a slow process.

Chelsea had hoped resolution would be reached before the players reported back for pre-season medical tests on 7 July, but that came and went with Conte, who has expected to depart all summer, having overseen the start of training this week.

Napoli unveiled Carlo Ancelotti as Sarri’s replacement on Wednesday, but have still to release their former manager from his contract. “The Sarri deal is in the home stretch, and it depends on him,” De Laurentiis said. “I’ve laid down my conditions. It’s all in the hands of the lawyers. My lawyers have drafted a text and sent it to his lawyers, and we will see what happens.”

Jorginho, a Brazilian-Italian who was handed his first cap for the Azzurri by Conte, may become Chelsea’s first signing of the summer after the player apparently indicated a preference to come to London rather than join the Premier League champions, Manchester City.

“I have to apologise to City,” De Laurentiis said. “I closed the negotiations with them two weeks ago, solving various issues, but if the player would rather live in London than Manchester, I can understand it. If Chelsea are paying him even more, I can understand that too. The Jorginho deal is not dependent upon Sarri [moving to Chelsea].”

City, though, are understood to be unhappy with Napoli and De Laurentiis. The champions believe Jorginho does want to join City, having told Napoli two months ago he wants to play for Pep Guardiola. City believe that the player is being used by Napoli as a factor to smooth the proposed move of Sarri to Chelsea.

Reports in Italy suggest the 26-year-old midfielder, who has eight international caps, would cost Chelsea a little over £50m, with the club likely to pay a further £7.5m to secure Sarri’s release. There have been reports in Italy that Cesc Fàbregas, who has entered the final year of his contract at Stamford Bridge, could move in the other direction, but the Spain midfielder is understood to have no interest in moving to Italy.