Chelsea already have a plan in place to replace Antonio Conte in the summer, according to the Daily Record.
Conte was appointed Chelsea manager in summer 2016 and delivered the Premier League title in his first season, but his reign has not been without its hitches.
The Italian has clashed with the Stamford Bridge boardroom over transfers on a number of occasions, and is not thought to be wedded to the club beyond his three-year deal, which expires in summer 2019.
According to Ian McGarry on the Daily Record’s ‘Transfer Window Podcast‘, Chelsea have already put plans in place to replace Conte.
He claims that former manager Carlo Ancelotti has held discussions with Roman Abramovich over a potential return, and that it is a case of “when”, not “if”.
“Ancelotti will not be returning to PSG because he will be moving back to London in February,” he said.
“And there he will be waiting to replace Conte at Chelsea. He has been spoken to by Chelsea with regards to succeeding Conte, who everyone at the club believes will not be at the club beyond the end of this season.
“Indeed, if things go badly in the Champions League knockout stages then he may even be away before then and Carlo will be in situ. That’s what will be happening.”
McGarry adds that Conte “will definitely be gone by the start of next season”.
Ancelotti managed Chelsea for two years from 2009, winning a Premier League and FA Cup double before being sacked in May 2011.
McGarry claims that “even Abramovich” has come to realise that “his decision” to sack Ancelotti then “was premature”, and that “Ancelotti is seen as the right man because he won’t cause rows about transfer policy.”