Speculation has been rife in recent weeks about who would take charge at Stamford Bridge next season after interim boss Rafa Benitez confirmed he would be leaving at the end of the current campaign. Reports suggested Jose Mourinho would return to his former club but, in a sensational move, the west London club’s Russian owner is preparing to take charge of team affairs.
A Chelsea insider confirmed to talkSPORT that the billionaire oligarch has been attending a fast-track coaching course at the FA’s new centre of excellence, St George’s Park, and he now needs to pass just one more exam before being awarded his UEFA Pro licence which would enable him to take over at Chelsea.
Former Blues boss Gianluca Vialli has known about Abramovich’s plans for some time, but was sworn to secrecy until now.
He told talkSPORT: “I’ve heard about Roman Abramovich. He’s nearly completed his coaching badges. It was a rumour at the beginning but now it’s out there and everyone knows about it.
“I spoke to him and he wanted to know a few things about how to become the best manager in the world. He actually wanted to buy his coaching badges, but I said you can’t buy that, you have to go through the process.”
The news will send shockwaves through the Premier League but Vialli, who won five trophies during his time in the Stamford Bridge hot-seat, is confident Abramovich has the tools to succeed.
“I think he will be good,” he added. “He will have the full attention of the players and he can talk to them about contracts, line-ups and stuff.
“I think it will be the first time we have had a chairman and manager of the same club and I wish him all the best. I think he will do a great job.”