Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has been left unconvinced by Rafa Benitez and is already plotting to replace him with someone new at the end of the season.
According to the Sun, that someone is Jose Mourinho, who is set to get the chance to walk away from his troubled position at Chelsea should he still have one come the summer.
Perez still believes Mourinho is the best manager in the world, despite leaving the Bernabeu in 2013 after a trophy-less season. His three-year spell in Madrid was spoiled by several fallouts with senior players, but he has maintained a close relationship with the Real chief.
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That is why Los Blancos want to take the opportunity to bring him back if it should present itself. A disastrous start to the season at Chelsea has left him fighting for his future and it has been reported that Roman Abramovich has at least considered removing him already.
The Blues currently sit in 14th place in the Premier League after garnering 15 points from 15 games so far. Their latest defeat – 1-0 against Bournemouth at home – was their eighth of the season and some believed another defeat against Porto would have sealed his fate.
Fall from grace
A 2-0 win earned Mourinho a stay of execution, but his team face a tougher test on Monday as they travel to league leaders Leicester City. Another defeat and he will only move closer to the exit door.
But despite a dramatic fall from grace, Mourinho has retained his reputation as a world-class manager, at least in La Liga, where Valencia are also interested in hiring him on a long-term basis this summer.
Benitez in trouble
A Madrid source to the same report: “If Florentino could have Jose back without any trouble, he’d do it tomorrow. We are not at that stage yet.
"But it is true that they are in regular contact and their relationship goes way beyond the professional. They are friends.”
Similarly, Benitez has come under intense scrutiny from day 1 at Real Madrid and has reportedly failed to convince Cristiano Ronaldo that he is the man to bring trophies. Indeed, some punters even thought he'd be sacked on the spot following Barcelona's 4-0 victory at the Bernabeu last month.