Manchester United are keeping close tabs of Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti, throwing the long-term future of Louis van Gaal into doubt.
A report in Marca claims that both Manchester United and Manchester City are ready to offer Ancelotti a chance to return to the Premier League if Real Madrid sack him.
The Italian's future at the Bernabeu is in some doubt after a disastrous start to 2015. Their 4-3 defeat to Schalke 04 may have been good enough to get them into the last eight of the Champions League, but it didn't go down well amongst Real Madrid fans.
Ancelotti is keen to stay on with Real Madrid, but is well aware of how trigger happy president Florentino Perez can be. If they fail to win any silverware this season it is likely the 55-year-old will be given his marching orders.
That will instigate a bidding war between City and United officials with both keen to replace their current managers with Ancelotti. It is the Citizens who seem more willing to part with their manager Manuel Pellegrini, but United may be willing to get rid of Van Gaal if Ancelotti indicates a desire to take charge at Old Trafford.
Van Gaal's uncertain future
Van Gaal was awarded a three-year deal to takeover from David Moyes last summer, but has failed to impress thus far. Despite spending £150 million in transfers, Manchester United are still struggling to qualify for the top four.
Should they miss out for a second consecutive season, Old Trafford officials may re-evaluate Van Gaal's position ahead of what is sure to be another summer of heavy investment. Ancelotti's availability will be top of the agenda in any such meeting.
Man City favourites
Again, Manchester City seems the more likely option if Real Madrid part ways with their manager. Pellegrini's future is in some doubt as he faces up to a trophy-less season at the Etihad. It would take something miraculous for them to catch Chelsea and a bigger miracle for them to overturn a 2-1 aggregate score against Barcelona in the Champions League.
For the Abu Dhabi sheiks who own Manchester City, that won't be good enough and Pellegrini is likely to find himself out of the door.
Would Manchester United fans like to see Louis van Gaal sacked if it means Carlo Ancelotti can take charge? Tell us what you think in the comments box below!