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Paulo Sousa is "not in contact" with Fiorentina, Basel sporting director expects him to stay

The FC Basel coach has been heavily linked with the Viola job should Montella leave

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

All weekend, rumors - often unsubstantiated - have been flying around that Vincenzo Montella is close to leaving Fiorentina thanks to poor rapports with the ownership and Andrea Della Valle in particular. What most of these reports of Montella's imminent departure have in common is that ex-Juventus player and rapidly rising manager Paulo Sousa is the first choice to replace the aeroplanino. Some papers went so far as to say that ADV made his frustrated public statement because the Viola ownership had Sousa was "waiting in the wings."

It's none other than Sousa himself to call these reports into doubt, as he was asked about a possible job in Florence during his end of season press conference. "I'm not in contact with Fiorentina," said the Portuguese manager. "I am here at the Basel press conference... I haven't promised anything. I'm just thinking about doing a good job every day." Of course, Sousa may be just avoiding conflict, since Montella remains the manager of Fiorentina, and nothing should be said to the media until a move is nearly certain.

But all the same, with Montella likely to meet with Viola ownership today or tomorrow before departing for vacation in Madagascar, and the Italian boss with 2 years of contract left, perhaps rumors of the "total rupture" and the "search for replacements" have been slightly overblown.

FC Basel sporting director also said today that Sousa has had "no offers," and fully expects the rising coach to remain at Basel after a title-winning first season in Switzerland.