Carlo Ancelotti is set to leave Real Madrid just a year on from leading them to the coveted Decima - a 10th Champions League success - and all but confirmed this before any official word from the club.
Ancelotti is set to pay for a season without the league, a domestic cup or European success, although he Italian himself has explained he needs to take a year out of the game in order to undergo a procedure on his spine.
But while Florentino Perez and his itchy trigger finger may have decided to fire in the direction of Ancelotti, there are many at Real Madrid who hope he remains at the Santiago Bernabeu - and notable names they are, too.
Cristiano Ronaldo is chief among them, with the Real Madrid icon tweeting after the final game of the season on Saturday that he hoped Ancelotti - described as an ‘amazing person' - will keep his position.
That is certainly a significant show of faith and, even though Ronaldo’s opinion does hold significant sway in Madrid, it will not be enough to ensure that Ancelotti does indeed continue as manager for next season.
James Rodriguez, meanwhile, has also stated that he hopes Ancelotti will be the coach but this too will seemingly fall on deaf ears.
“It would be hard and a big blow if he left,” he said.
“He came two years ago and knows the team, how we are and how we play. But it’s not my decision.”
In terms of a replacement, it is Rafa Benitez who is expected to take up the job once Ancelotti has gone.
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