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Why is this Zenit star on board a flight to London?

Hulk playing for Brazil

On the day of boss Luciano Spalletti's exit from the club, Hulk has incurred further uncertainty by posting an image of him and his agent en route to the English capital.

Zenit St Petersburg striker Hulk risked the wrath of his side's fanbase today by tweeting a picture of him and his agent on board a flight to London.

The image - which appeared on his Instagram page - was slightly ill-timed given the sacking of manager Luciano Spalletti and is believed to be a major factor behind the supporters' rage.

Chelsea have been extensively linked with a move for the Brazilian star and reportedly submitted a bid for the player back in the summer, but were not able to formalise a move.

Hulk posted the picture with the message: 'Going to work in London. With my manager and friend # Teo', which did little to quell speculation which persists to link him with a switch to Stamford Bridge.

It came after Spalletti was relieved of his duties with the Russian club, just a week before their Champions League round of 16 second leg against Borussia Dortmund, having lost the first meeting at home 4-2, a game in which Hulk scored from the penalty spot.

The Italian manager's departure comes after Lokomotiv Moscow seized top spot in the Russian league standings at the weekend, with Zenit only managing to draw blanks in a 0-0 stalemate with Tom Tomsk.

Former Russia captain Sergei Semak will deputise for Spalletti for the short term while the club find their next manager.

A club statement read: 'We would like to thank Luciano Spalletti for everything that he has done to develop football and we will always be glad to see him in St Petersburg. Grazie, Mister'.

The ex-Roma and Udinese manager Spalletti led Zenit to two league titles and a Russian Cup during his spell at the helm and was even named manager of the year in 2010 and 2012 but with Lokomotiv challenging Zenit for domestic supremacy, a decision has been reached to let go of the 55-year-old.

It isn't the first time he has done so either. Hulk posted a similar photo in January en route to London which also led to speculation, but ultimately nothing. However in this case it's the timing which is certainly noteworthy in light of Spalletti's dismissal.

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