Since the departure of Andre Villas-Boas on March 4th there has been much speculation over the next permanent manager at Chelsea and there’s been calls from the fans, players and media for Roberto Di Matteo to be given the job on a full-time basis.
The Italian took on the role of interim manager following Villas-Boas’ dismissal and helped the Stamford Bridge club win both the FA Cup and Champions League, which has strengthened his position and he’s currently the odds on favourite to be given the job.
But there’s conflicting reports out there as The Times suggests that although Roman Abramovich isn’t fully convinced by the 41-year-old’s credentials to do the job on a permanent basis he will offer him a one-year deal and give him a further chance to prove himself.
Then there’s the Daily Star, who take a different angle completely and argue that although Robbie won the FA Cup and Champions League, a ‘source close to Abramovich’ revealed that the Chelsea board think he made plenty of mistakes and won’t bow to public opinion.
The ‘source’ said:
“Roman thinks Di Matteo has been very, very lucky and that he made a lot of mistakes in the games he’s been in charge, with his tactics and selections.
“The statistics in the two games against Barcelona and the final show just how lucky Di Matteo was. Roman has to decide this week and he will not care what the public thinks.
“Roman did not become a billionaire worrying about public opinion – he only cares about what is right for the club.”
Pep Guardiola is still thought to be Abramovich’s first choice but he’s on a sabbatical and it would take some convincing to change his mind, although I wouldn’t put that past our Russian owner. Jose Mourinho has ruled himself out of a return to west London by signing a new deal at Real Madrid.
Former England boss Fabio Capello has recently distanced himself from the Chelsea hotseat despite being strongly linked with the job over the last two weeks. The likes of Harry Redknapp, Laurent Blanc and Joachim Low are all also in the betting, but wouldn’t make any sense to let Di Matteo go over doubts about his tactical acumen to bring in a clueless Redknapp, so I don’t think Droopy the Dog will be called in for an interview.
The available candidates are rather underwhelming so I think Di Matteo will be given the short contract, probably the one-year deal that has been mooted by the Times, and Abramovich will try again for Guardiola again at the end of the next campaign if he cannot get him sooner.
Who do you think will be the next Chelsea manager?