STAKE OUT Chelsea stalwart Staker set to quit after cult hero axed from player liaison job
Pamela|Aug. 20, 2019
CHELSEA stalwart Gary Staker, who has been at the side of every Blues manager for 20 year, is on the verge of quitting.
The popular employee – who is half Italian – has been a familiar face since he became Italian superstar Gianluca Vialli’s translator when the striker was appointed player-manager in 1998.
He is close to many club legends like John Terry and Didier Drogba .
Staker was even called a "big friend" by Jose Mourinho who dedicated a Chelsea victory to him four years ago.
But a report in The Times claims he was told last week that the Chelsea hierarchy want to move him away from the first team picture.
Cult hero Staker - who has been working as the player-liaison officer at Stamford Bridge - has been offered a role looking after the club’s ambassadors.
This is a group of former players including Tore Andre Flo, Carlo Cudicini, Paulo Ferreira and Eddie Newton, who has been promoted to first team coach.
But Staker – who began his Chelsea career as a steward – is understood to be unhappy with the switch and is considering leaving the club altogether.
Staker has become part of the furniture at Chelsea after being promoted to Vialli’s translator in 1998.
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He then was a key figure under another Italian boss, Claudio Ranieri, who led the club for four years from 2000 to 2004.
He has since worked alongside all the Chelsea managers since, and was spotted in the stands of a Udinese game in 2016 alongside Antonio Conte’s brother and agent Daniele, before the club appointed him manager.
In 2015 then manager Jose Mourinho dedicated Chelsea’s 1-0 win over Norwich to Staker after he missed the game following the death of his father.
Jose said: “I would like personally to dedicate this victory to somebody who is so close to us.
“Gary Staker lost his dad yesterday and couldn’t be with us today. My thoughts are with a big friend from all of us.”
The Times reports that manager Frank Lampard and his assistant Jody Morris, who both know Staker from their time as players at Chelsea, are not involved in the decision to change his job.
One eagle-eyed Chelsea fan spotted Staker was missing from the tunnel during Sunday's 1-1 draw with Leicester.
Supporter @stevemoss10 wrote: "Question Chelsea Family: Has Gary Staker left Chelsea???? .,didn't see him in the players tunnel yesterday"
Question Chelsea Family: Has Gary Staker left Chelsea ???? .,didn't see him in the players tunnel yesterday — steve dixon moss (@stevemoss10) August 19, 2019
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