Four candidates to replace Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea

Jack Kitson by Jack Kitson / 14 June 2019, 14:30

Chelsea have seemingly learnt their lesson from last year’s managerial debacle after agreeing a ‘deal in principle’ for Maurizio Sarri to make the move back to his homeland with Italian Juventus giants.*

*Maurizio Sarri has since left Chelsea for Juventus

Speculation surrounding Sarri’s replacement at Chelsea has been brewing for some time, with a host of candidates thrown into the mix throughout the last few months.

One of which is - or shall we say was - Max Allegri who vacated the post at Juventus last month following a trophy-drenched five years at the helm.

However, given that the 51-year-old has just revealed that he will take a year out to ‘recharge his batteries’, a third successive Italian appointment at Chelsea looks unlikely - but not totally out of the question (14/1).

Frank Lampard still tops the next Chelsea manager market, albeit by some distance now as bookmakers continue to trim his odds. Lampard can be backed as short as 1/8 to make the move back down to London and attempt to add to the 11 major trophies he won at Stamford Bridge as a player.

Chelsea will need to decide whether to take a punt on the club legend who has only a year in management to his name, in the Championship with Derby County, with whom he led to Wembley last season where they lost to Aston Villa in the play-off final.

It’s undoubtedly a risk but with the former Chelsea player and youth team boss Jody Morris by his side, it could be one worth taking, especially given the club’s two-window transfer ban.

The betting reveals a sizeable gap between Lampard and the next major contender, Rafa Benitez.

Yes, Rafa Benitez, you did read that correctly.

The (interim) manager who led Chelsea to Europa League glory in 2013 is a 10/1 shot to make a shock return six years later. Benitez, whose Newcastle contract expires at the end of June, wouldn’t be the most popular appointment, but then again he wasn’t back in 2012 and still enjoyed success.

A third spell for Jose Mourinho?

The Sack Race contributor Andy Dillon states via SunSport that the out-of-work Portuguese coach ‘would seriously consider making a third return to Stamford Bridge’.

In his first spell Mourinho won back-to-back titles, a couple of League Cups, the FA Cup, and Charity Shield, before returning in 2013 where he won the league and League Cup double.

The likes of Watford head coach Javi Gracia, England assistant Steve Holland, and Laurent Blanc have also been linked, as has Nuno Santo who has enjoyed two stunning seasons at Wolves; from Championship promotion to 7th in the Premier League.

The former Porto coach is reportedly on Chelsea’s ‘six-man shortlist’ (The Express), but it would take a titanic offer to prize him away from the Midlands. Admittedly a switch appears unlikely, although it’s worth noting that in his three previous jobs in management he never made it into a third season.

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