Speculation is mounting that the Chelsea boss is about to resign from his role at Stamford Bridge.
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Chelsea have denied reports suggesting coach Carlo Ancelotti is ready to quit.
The Italian has come under pressure in recent weeks following a dip in in the Blues’ form, coupled with the shock departure of his right-hand man Ray Wilkins.
The Blues have lost three of their last four games, but still remain top of the Premier League on goal difference despite defeat to Birmingham on Saturday.
On Sunday, bookmakers reported a huge surge in betting on Ancelotti departing and rumours began to spread that he was ready to walk away.
But the champions have reacted by insisting that is not the case, and told Sky Sports News: “He is contracted until 2012 and speculation about his future is total nonsense.”
Ancelotti did suggest that he was lacking the control that somebody such as Sir Alex Ferguson possessed at Manchester United.
“You compare me with Ferguson, it’s a different position. Ferguson has total control of the team. I have just technical direction. Full stop. OK?” he said.
“Obviously when the team doesn’t win people put more responsibility on the coach. But this is normal.
“This is my job. If the team are not getting good results it is normal to have more responsibility.
“So I am ready for the criticism. This is the life of the coach. Yes, this is a difficult moment but we are capable of moving on quickly.” (Sky Sports)
With Chelsea having lost three of their last four games to Liverpool, Sunderland and Birmingham respectfully, there was always going to be speculation over the coach’s future.
It also does not look good that Chelsea scored no goals against those teams, and conceded six.
Even so, the club’s denial of his departure is hardly a vote of confidence.
Furthermore, Ancelotti’s statement did little to portray a man happy in the Stamford Bridge hotseat – with Roman Abramovich increasingly seeming like a Sword Of Damocles over the Italian’s head.
Since losing his assistant Ray Wilkins – a decision clearly out of Ancelotti’s hands – the Blues have stumbled, and Ancelotti’s comments to the press on the matter have only served to heighten rumours of discontent.
Despite the club’s statement though, the media appears almost united that Ancelotti is on the verge of walking away, and given the flurry of bets at bookmakers and rapid shortening of odds, there has to be some sort of substance in the story.
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