Roman Abramovich falls on Avram Grant to choose next Chelsea manager


Avram Grant is advicing Chelsea on who should be the club’s next coach

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovic has turned to Ghana coach Avram Grant for help and recruitment advice in picking the English Premier League club’s next manager.

According to the Telegraph newspaper in the UK, the billionaire Russian club owner has turned to the former coach of the club in seeking a permanent solution for the coaching problems of the Blues.

The Blues are still on the lookout for a long-term replacement for Jose Mourinho, who they sacked late last year. They brought in Guus Hiddink on another short-term deal, but he will step down from his position at the end of the season.

Abramovic is seeking the advice in the shortlisting of former Chilean boss Jorge Sampaoli who is high on the club’s wanted list, but the likes of Diego Simeone, Massimiliano Allegri and Antonio Conte are also being considered.

The final decision will be made by Abramovich but the Russian billionaire will take soundings from former Chelsea manager Avram Grant before making the final decision over the choice.

Despite being sacked by Abramovich in 2008, Grant remains close to him and his opinion is still valued – as was proved by Chelsea’s signing of left-back Baba Rahman, whom Grant manages for Ghana and recommended to his old club.

The Israeli has close ties with the Russian owner, being appointed director of football in 2007 before controversially replacing Jose Mourinho as manager, despite not having the necessary UEFA coaching badges.

The 61-year-old current Ghana coach led the Blues to their first ever Champions League final that season, suffering a 6-5 defeat on penalties to Manchester United.

But it seems the loss hasn’t lived long in Abramovich’s memory, who has been in talks with technical director Michael Emenalo, director Marina Granovskaia and Grant this month.

Grant spent a brief spell in charge of the club in 2007/08, and though he led them to their first Champions League final he ultimately failed to bring any silverware back to Stamford Bridge.

However, Abramovic is still believed to value his opinion, and has turned to him for help in trying to identify their new boss.

Current interim boss Guus Hiddink, in his second stint at the club, is not expected to challenge for the position next season and is a rank outsider at 20/1.

The Blues face Manchester City in the fifth round of the FA Cup this Sunday (4pm) with Hiddink looking to go all the way and replicate his 2008/09 triumph.

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