Tuesday’s 3-0 defeat at Juventus meant that Di Matteo had taken charge of the team for the final time, with owner Roman Abramovich unhappy to see Chelsea on the verge of bowing out of the Champions League just a few months after the Blues lifted the trophy.
The bookies have all added a Next Chelsea manager market and it is Rafael Benitez who leads the way at a best price 10/11 (Blue Square free bets). The former Liverpool and Inter Milan boss has reportedly been speaking with Abramovich about the now-vacant position and this is a club that clearly match his ambitions.
Benitez was able to win the Champions League with Liverpool on a much smaller budget and came relatively close to winning the Premier League title with the Merseyside outfit although his stint in charge of Inter Milan was less successful as Jose Mourinho proved a tougher act to follow.
Pep Guardiola is a man that could attract interest at 9/2 (Stan James bookmaker) and the former Barcelona manager is available next summer after taking a year-long sabbatical following on from a successful spell at the Nou Camp which saw the Spaniard desire a break from football.
Perhaps an interim manager will take charge for a few months before Guardiola takes the reins and Harry Redknapp could tick some boxes in that regard, with the former Tottenham manager available for a new challenge at the moment and he has ties with the west London club thanks to his relationship with Frank Lampard.
Avram Grant is surprisingly as short as 10/1 with some firms and it’s possible that this friend of Abramovich would be prepared to take charge of the team for a few months, while that man Jose Mourinho is available at 33/1 and it would make an amazing story if the Real Madrid coach returned to Stamford Bridge.
David Moyes is also a 33/1 chance to become the next Chelsea manager although it’s hard to see the Scot leaving his long-standing position at Everton to head south, while West Brom’s Steve Clarke is available at 40/1 with Sportingbet although William Hill go as short as 12/1 about someone who has close ties with the London club.