24 May 2011

Search for new Chelsea manager could take some time

7:50 am on 24 May 2011

The job description for the new Chelsea vacancy is straightforward: Premier League football club seeking a manager to win the Champions League.

However finding a seventh manager in the eight seasons since Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich took over at Stamford Bridge will be much trickier, even if the bookmakers' list of possibilities is extensive.

In dismissing Carlo Ancelotti after a trophyless campaign, Chelsea's statement said the season had "fallen short of expectations" and the club's long-term ambitions remained unchanged.

Any of the favourites for the job, from Marco Van Basten to Guus Hiddink and Andre Villas Boas to Harry Redknapp, will be aware that second place in the Premier League is not good enough and that only European glory will do.

Those high expectations, which Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson has branded Abramovich's "obsession" with the Champions League, have cost a string of managers their jobs.

The self-proclaimed 'Special One' Jose Mourniho is also among the names being mentioned in the British media but Chelsea's most successful manager is widely thought to have unfinished business at Real Madrid.