Russian owner wants to bring Guardiola to Stamford Bridge but may settle for Guus Hiddink in short-term.
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Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti will not resign but owner Roman Abramovich is already lining up his successor.
The 51-year-old Italian is under pressure after being dumped out of the FA Cup at the weekend by Everton on penalities and lie 12 points off Premier League leaders Manchester United.
This leaves the Champions League as Chelsea’s only chance of silverware and Ancelotti’s last hopes of saving his job.
Abramovich has never kept the same manager in his job for longer than six months if they were unable to win a trophy.
Claudio Ranieri, Jose Mourinho, and Avram Grant all lost their job after failing to secure silverware.
The Russian is now looking at his options and he sees Barcelona’s Pep Guardiola as the ideal choice to take over the reins at Stamford Bridge.
Guardiola will bring an attacking style to Stamford Bridge that Abramovich craves, will be able to coax the best out of Fernando Torres and rebuild the ageing Chelsea squad.
The 40-year-old Spaniard has already won the Champions league, Uefa Supercup and the Club World Cup, two La Liga titles, a Copa del Rey and two Spanish Supercups.
Guardiola has recently signed a new contract with Barcelona but it is only a one-year extension and would not be too hard to prize him away from the Catalan club.
He himself is said to be keen for a new challenge and considers the Premier League as the best place for him.
Abramovich knows it will be impossbile to bring the Spaniard in until the summer and if Ancelotti loses to Copenhagen in the Champions League, the Russian will bring in Guus Hiddink again on a temporary basis.
Hidink was in charge of Chelsea in 2009 turning around the season, after the poor start made by Luiz Felipe Scolari, and winning the FA Cup.
The Dutchman is currently manager of the Turkish national team but is under pressure. His team have lost their last three and trail Germany and Austria in qualification for Euro 2012.
But Ancelotti has vowed not to quit and knows he must deliver in the Champions League.
“I have never quit, resigned or walked out and I’m not in the mood to quit now,” he said.
“I don’t have to consider my position. It is the owner that has to consider my position, not myself.
“I just have to work and try to do my best. This is football, you have to be able to manage at this moment with confidence.”