Chelsea eye imminent Benitez departure - Mourinho targeted in the summer
Chelsea news: Reports suggest Chelsea will axe Rafa Benitez, and bring in Avram Grant before targeting Jose Mourinho
Chelsea are considering dumping interim boss Rafa Benitez after his astonishing post-match rant last night, and could replace him temporarily with Avram Grant before the arrival of Jose Mourinho in the summer.
Benitez risked the wrath of his employers as well as the Chelsea fans last night following the 2-0 FA Cup 5th round win over Middlesbrough.
The Spaniard hit out at the club's fans for booing him throughout his four-month tenure at Stamford Bridge so far, and blasted Chelsea officials for naming him as 'interim' boss after he took over from Roberto di Matteo in November.
Now according to the Evening Standard, Chelsea - who insist today that it is business as usual at the cub's Cobham training ground and make no mention of Benitez's rant on their official website - are considering bringing in Grant once more to take over for the remainder of the season before luring back another former boss in Mourinho in the summer.
Despite overseeing Real Madrid's victory over Barcelona on Tuesday to secure a place in the Copa del Rey final, it seems possible that Mourinho could be on his way out of the Bernabeu after a season of poor domestic results and in-house fighting.
The Portuguese coach enjoyed a hugely successful three year spell at Stamford Bridge, winning back to back Premier League titles.
However he left under a cloud in 2007 amidst reports of a bust-up with owner Roman Abramovich, although the pair's relationship appears to have thawed considerably since then.
With Mourinho, who has been targeted by Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City, likely to be available in the summer, Chelsea are said to be ready to bring in Grant, who took over on a temporarily when Mourinho left Stamford Bridge in 2007, until the end of the season.
The Israeli boss oversaw Chelsea's charge to the Champions League final in 2008 and has remained close to Abramovich ever since.
Despite rumours of his imminent departure, Benitez took charge of training at Cobham today, and will still be in charge of when Chelsea take on West Brom this weekend.