Chelsea have been linked with hiring Manuel Pellegrini as their next boss - and Jose Mourinho for one would hate it.
The agent of Manuel Pellegrini confirmed last week that Chelsea had made an approach to his client regarding taking over from 'interim' boss Rafa Benitez in the summer.
The Chilean has a fine record; winning numerous trophies in South America as boss, and leading Real Madrid to their highest ever points total in his one season there as manager.
But as current Real boss Jose Mourinho keenly points out; Pellegrini has yet to win a trophy in Europe, and was still beaten to the title by Barcelona in the record-setting Madrid season.
The former boss of Villareal and current Malaga coach is highly renowned in football circles, and recently got one over on Jose when he led his side to a win over Madrid in their last meeting.
Mourinho's own future remains clouded, while much may become clearer pending the outcome of their Champions League second round second leg with Manchester United in a fortnight; he is the bookies favourite to take over at Chelsea in May.
Chelsea were the club with which Jose declared his 'Special One' moniker, and is believed to have warmed to thoughts of a comeback and being reunited with Roman Abramovich, and will not like the thought of being beaten to a post he no doubt still regards highly, by Manuel Pellegrini.
There's no love lost between the pair, here's what Mourinho had to say about Pellegrini over the course of the past couple of years; controversially branding him a 'loser'.
"Second place is just the first loser. If Madrid were to fire me, I wouldn't go to Malaga. I'd go to a top-level team in Italy or England."
Pellegrini recently had his say back, stating: "I don't like coaches who are only interested in results. The concepts of spectacle and creativity and fundamental to me."
There is one key hope here for Chelsea fans; and that's Mourinho's competitive streak. In his early days at Real, until he won the title last year, he was haunted by Pellegrini's points total the season before. He doesn't like losing, coming off second best, and may perceive the Chelsea post as such a challenge.
Losing out to Pellegrini may irk him highly, and the approach could just see Mourinho's determination to become Chelsea manager increase. If it's a tactical ploy by Abramovich to smoke Jose out; it's genius.
Chelsea fans, who do you want as boss next season?
image: © Ben Sutherland