Hiddink lurks as Chelsea struggle

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Andre Villas-Boas is trying to pick up the pieces of Chelsea's worst start to a season in the Roman Abramovich era as it emerged the shadow of Guus Hiddink would continue to hang over him until at least next year.

Villas-Boas is confident he retains the full backing of Blues owner Abramovich in the wake of his side's 2-1 defeat to Liverpool, which left them a massive 12 points adrift of Premier League leaders Manchester City. Concerns over Champions League qualification saw Hiddink brought in to rescue the Blues' season when Luiz Felipe Scolari was sacked almost three years ago.

And revealing Hiddink had received five offers from clubs and countries across the globe in the days since he lost his job as Turkey boss, agent Cees van Nieuwenhuizen told Press Association Sport: "We have said to all of them that he would first take a break and think over his future and then will come back somewhere maybe in January."

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