Blue is the colour at Stamford Bridge. That’s usually, a reference to the famous strip, but for the past couple of seasons, it has also been an accurate description of the mood of the fans. Despite an ever-expanding expenditure, Todd Boehly’s kitchen sink approach to the transfer window is yet to yield any meaningful results – barring an appearance in the upcoming Carabao Cup Final. Making the sports news headlines for all the wrong reasons, fans and punters assessing the best betting apps UK have long since lost their faith.
Finishing down in 12th last season and currently languishing in 11th – fully 15 points off the top four – underperformance doesn’t come close to describing the efforts of one of the most expensively assembled squads in history.
Graham Potter couldn’t get it right, and now, seemingly, neither can Mauricio Pochettino. A 4-2 home battering at the hands of Wolverhampton Wanderers was the latest ignominy to befall the Blues as their tale of ineptitude expands ever further. Whether that embarrassment proves the final straw remains to be seen, but Pochettino is skating on very thin ice. If the Argentinian coach does receive his P45, the question on the lips of many Chelsea fans is, who will replace him? Here, we look at nine names put forward as potential candidates to be the next to settle into the Stamford Bridge hot seat.
Housewives favourite Edwards would, at least, look good in the Stamford Bridge dugout, but will his Graham Potter-esque coaching style deter Todd Boehly? The leap from Luton to Chelsea would also be even greater than that taken by the ex-Brighton boss. But on the other hand, if Edwards can get so much out of the side with the lowest squad value in the league, what could he do with the biggest?
Another young gun, 39-year-old Amorim is the current boss of Portuguese outfit Sporting CP. Amidst strong links to Spurs before Ange’s tenure and now with Liverpool post-Klopp, it appears inevitable that Amorim will soon grace one of the Premier League giants with his presence.
Having been absent from the game for over two years, the former Real Madrid coach seems primed for a comeback. With his managerial aspirations seemingly aligned with former clubs Juventus, Real Madrid, or a nation-state-backed Marseille, he may prove tough to tempt. However, Zidane is such a big name that he will inevitably be linked with any major available job.
Frank remains a perennial contender for top managerial positions, yet perpetually falls short – largely due to his stylistic approach to football. It seems club owners struggle to grasp a manager’s ability to adapt to player quality, leaving Frank perennially in the shadows. In a similar mode to Edwards, Frank has worked wonders with relatively scant resources and would rate a deserving and intriguing appointment.
For many in the game, Alonso is the next manager in waiting at Anfield following Jurgen Klopp’s surprise announcement in January. Having proven himself at Bayer Leverkusen and with strong Anfield connections, he seems one of the more natural fits. But could Chelsea get in first and make the Spaniard an offer he can’t refuse?
Roberto De Zerbi
The departure of Graham Potter to Chelsea and the arrival of De Zerbi at Brighton was supposed to see the Blues soar and the Seagulls knocked off their perch. It’s fair to say that it hasn’t worked out that way. Having had their fingers burnt with Potter, Chelsea may be reluctant to look to the South Coast once more but, purely on his excellent body of work, De Zerbi is a legitimate contender.
Another manager who will leave his role at the end of the season, Xavi’s playing credentials are impossible to fault. However, he hasn’t matched up to those levels in the dugout, with his impending departure from Barcelona coming on the back of a string of poor results and increasing pressure from the stands. Nevertheless, he’s one of the biggest names in the game and may be interested in trying his hand in the Premier League as his next challenge.
The Special One Part III, anyone? Although some Chelsea fans might entertain the idea of a third stint – given Mourinho’s past successes and proven ability to instil the club’s values – it seems unlikely under Boehly, who appears committed to diverging from the Abramovich approach. Out of work since leaving Roma, he is at least available and comes without the hassle of attempting to lure a manager from another club or waiting until the end of the season.
Sanchez’s name garners attention from top clubs worldwide due to his remarkable work with Girona. Heading into the final third of the La Liga season, the Catalonia minnows sit second in the table, just one point off Real Madrid, having scored more goals than any other side. The Spanish version of Leicester City 2015/16 is very much a possibility. If the 48-year-old pulls it off, he will be one of the hottest properties In the European game.