Former Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo is set to be confirmed as the new coach of Aston Villa.
The former Chelsea boss, who stepped down at Schalke a year ago after a seven-month spell at the German club, is understood to have been at the top of Villa’s wish-list ever since the takeover, with their new owner looking to make a marquee appointment to replace Remi Garde.
Di Matteo led Chelsea to Champions League glory in 2012, stepping up from his role as assistant to Andre Villas-Boas, only to leave six months later following a 3-0 Champions League defeat by Juventus.
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The club have been in talks with the Italian and he is close to becoming their fourth manager in just over 16 months. There are still minor issues to resolve and the deal has not been finalised, but Di Matteo is expected to be the man to try to guide Villa back into the Premier League.
Di Matteo, who won the Champions league as Chelsea manager in 2012, has been out of working since leaving Schalke last summer. Nigel Pearson was also in the frame but his decision to join Derby County last month cleared the way for Di Matteo, the choice of prospective new owner Tony Xia.