Club makes u-turn on former Wolves boss as Premier League rival on alert

Julen Lopetegui looked set to join AC Milan after ‘positive’ talks. He could now be returning to the Premier League. (Image: Getty Images)Julen Lopetegui looked set to join AC Milan after ‘positive’ talks. He could now be returning to the Premier League. (Image: Getty Images)
Julen Lopetegui looked set to join AC Milan after ‘positive’ talks. He could now be returning to the Premier League. (Image: Getty Images) | Getty Images
A former Wolves boss may be making a return to the Premier League this summer after all.

European giants AC Milan are having second thoughts about appointing former Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui according to multiple reports.

The Guardian report said that the Hammers have 'revived' their move for Lopetegui after learning of the latest developments. Lopetegui had been close to agreeing a deal to replace Stefano Pioli this summer but his appointment was meant with fan backlash.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

A petition was set up against his potential appointment and a hashtag of 'Nopetegui' was trending in Italy and now decision makers at the seven-time Champions League winners are considering going in a different direction.

In the latest update, Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport have 'decided' to listen to the fans and will not appoint Lopetegui. Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi is now being considered and they have also spoken to Paulo Fonesca, Christophe Galtier, Marcelo Gallardo and Domenico Tedesco.

De Zerbi is a front-runner as he was part of Milan's academy during his playing career. Mark Van Bommel is also being considered as he is a close friend of Zlatan Ibrahimovic who has an advisory role with Milan.

Lopetegui is now believed to be West Ham’s primary target according to West Ham newspaper Claret & Hugh. It has not yet been decided however if David Moyes will depart the London Stadium.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Moyes guided the club to Europa Conference League success last year and the Hammers are currently eighth in the league. A section of their fanbase though would like to see his time at the club come to an end.

The former Everton and Man United boss is expected to sit down with David Sullivan following the conclusion of the campaign to decide his fate. Moyes revealed he had been offered a new deal but had not yet decided if he wanted to sign it or not.

Should the Scotsman decide to move on then Lopetegui is high up on their list to replce him. He had been linked with several jobs over the course of the season after leaving Wolves but held out as Fabrizio Romano revealed his preference was to remain in the Premier League.

As for his successor, Gary O’Neil has defied expectations with the club set to finish in and around mid-table. Lopetegui’s departure on the eve of the campaign had many predicting them go down but they are nowhere near the drop zone.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.