Chelsea have reportedly reopened negotiations with former PSG manager Laurent Blanc, as a potential replacement for under-fire boss Maurizio Sarri.
According to reports from Italian outlet Tuttomercatoweb, Chelsea have reentered negotiations with former France and PSG manager Laurent Blanc, as pressure continues to mount on current head coach Maurizio Sarri.
The Italian tactician was appointed only this past summer by the Blues as a replacement for compatriot Antonio Conte, after he had led them to a Premier League and an FA Cup trophy in his two seasons in-charge.
Things began in tremendous fashion for Chelsea under Sarri, but their campaign has hit the rocks in recent weeks. Following heavy defeats to Bournemouth and Manchester City in the Premier League, which was preceded by another away loss to Arsenal, the former Napoli boss finds himself under intense pressure.
The recent decline in form saw Chelsea drop out of the top four of the league table, with their 0-6 thrashing at City condemning them to the sixth place, owing to a worse goal difference than fifth-placed Arsenal. The West Londoners did return to winning ways on Thursday, defeating Malmo 1-2 in the last-32 stage of the UEFA Europa League, but looked far from convincing.
With Sarri under pressure to turn things around at the earliest, the club are already looking at possible candidates to take over from the Italian should he fail to get Chelsea’s campaign back on track. Reports earlier had claimed that former Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane was a target for the Blues, and now as per TMW, they are also looking at Blanc as a possible candidate.
The 53-year-old former Manchester United defender is currently unattached to any club and hasn’t been active since leaving Paris Saint-Germain back in 2016. However, the success that he achieved during his three years at the helm of the French capital club and with Bordeaux prior to that makes him an attractive option for Chelsea.
In fact, the report goes on to add that the West London outfit had considered Blanc as a potential option in the summer, post Conte’s departure, but instead decided to go with Sarri. However, with the Italian struggling to get positive results of late, the Frenchman is back on Chelsea’s radar, with the report adding that they have already made contact with the manager.
Blanc, too, is understood to be keen on managing in the Premier League. Just a few days ago, in an interview with The Times, the Frenchman said: “Managing in England is a big ambition. I have big experience at Paris. I want a different challenge in England, Spain or Italy.”
Sarri may have bought more time with the win over Malmo earlier this week. But, with fixtures against Manchester United (FA Cup), Manchester City (Carabao Cup final) and Tottenham Hotspur lined up over the next fortnight, he will need to turn things around at the earliest or risk facing the axe, given Chelsea board’s trigger-happy nature.
Should it come to that, it remains to be seen if Chelsea bring in Blanc or Zidane or they look elsewhere for a replacement.