Chelsea will look to appoint a current Premier League manager if they are unable to land Diego Simeone or Massimiliano Allegri as their next boss.
According to the Telegraph, Eddie Howe, Mark Hughes and Claudio Ranieri are on Chelsea’s wish-list should they fail in their pursuit of a top-name manager in the summer.
The Blues’ allure has been hit hard by their rotten season and it’s conceivable that Atletico Madrid’s Simeone and Juventus coach Allegri, their main targets, will be put off by the thought of potentially missing out on next season’s Champions League.
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Howe, Hughes and Ranieri have all impressed at Bournemouth, Stoke and Leicester respectively and two of those names have connections with the west London club.
Hughes played for Chelsea for three seasons and won the FA Cup in 1997.
Meanwhile, Ranieri, whose Leicester side currently top the league, managed Chelsea for four years at the start of the century.
Howe’s inexperience - this is his first season as a Premier League manager - will likely cast him as the third-favourite out of the trio, but Chelsea are thoroughly impressed with his achievements at the Cherries.
Simeone has garnered rave reviews for turning Atletico into a contender despite the financial prowess of Barcelona and Real Madrid.
His side top La Liga and the Argentine is happy in Spain, but his contract does include a £15 million release clause.
Allegri guided Juventus to last season’s Champions League final and is reportedly learning English in preparation of a move to England.
Guardiola's a no go
The Atletico and Juventus managers are being considered as Chelsea expect Daniel Levy to reject any approaches for Mauricio Pochettino, while Manchester City are favourites to appoint Pep Guardiola.