Roman Abramovich lining up Ukraine boss and Chelsea old boy Andriy Shevchenko as potential replacement for Frank Lampard - reports
After a promising opening to the season in which Lampard saw his charges record a 17-match unbeaten run in all competitions, the train has come off the tracks in West London in the past month.
Lampard's team have lost four of their last six Premier League games, including heavy defeats to rivals Arsenal and Manchester City, to heap pressure on Chelsea's beleaguered head coach and ignite speculation that Abramovich may look elsewhere in the hope of salvaging the Blues' season.
Club legend and all-time top scorer Lampard has been hit with claims that several of his big-money summer imports, such as Kai Havertz and Timo Werner, are struggling to adapt to the Premier League and the recent decline under his stewardship has prompted intense speculation that he could be the latest Premier League boss to hit the managerial scrapheap.
One online bookmaker has made him the odds-on favorite to be axed, with the likes of Max Allegri, Thomas Tuchel and even former captain John Terry among the names thought to be towards the top of any hypothetical manager wishlist.
According to a report from Le10Sport, another former Chelsea player has emerged as a contender: Andriy Shevchenko.
Ukraine hero Shevchenko had a three-year spell at Stamford Bridge between 2006 and 2009, scoring only 22 goals in 77 appearances for the Londoners - a far cry from the 173 strikes he plundered in seven season in Serie A with AC Milan.
Despite Shevchenko's Chelsea playing career being less-than-stellar, Abramovich is reportedly of the opinion that the Ukraine coach might just be the man to steady the ship at Stamford Bridge.Also on rt.com Rodgers, Tuchel and... John Terry?: Bookies predict next Chelsea boss with Frank Lampard ODDS-ON to be next managerial casualty
Despite leaving Chelsea more than a decade ago, Shevchenko retains several ties to the club. He remains close with Abramovich, while his son Kristian, 14, plays for the club's academy.
Shevchenko's sole managerial experience is with his national team, winning 21 of his 40 games in charge and considerably enhancing his own reputation by helping his side to first place in a Euro 2020 qualification group that also included reigning champions Portugal.
Chelsea, though, are expected to give Lampard more time to right the wrongs at the club.
But if patience wears thin, you can expect Abramovich to make a few phone calls to some of Europe's most in-demand managers, with Shevchenko being among them.Also on rt.com ‘Utterly indefensible’: Furious Chelsea fans call for Abramovich to sack Lampard after embarrassing defeat to Man City