Carlo is No1 choice of Chelsea owner Abramovich

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London, May 30 : Unsubstantiated reports in Italy have claimed that Chelsea have made an offer to Carlo Ancelotti for the six million pound-a-year manager's job at the club.

Sources in Italy claimed last night that the AC Milan boss has been offered the job and owner Roman Abramovich has made Ancelotti his personal No1 choice and is favourite to succeed Avram Grant, with Blackburn boss Mark Hughes a close second.

Abramovich would also like Gianfranco Zola to return to the Bridge as Ancelotti's No2 after the sacking of Grant's assistant, Henk Ten Cate on Thursday. The former Ajax coach had been at the club for only seven months.

Ancelotti is believed to be a favourite of Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich and will be tempted not only by the huge salary on offer, but by the transfer war chest the Russian can offer and guaranteed Champions League football.

AC Milan finished fifth in Serie A, which means that they will be out of the Champions League for only the second time in the past decade, which may convince Ancelotti to move on, the Daily Express reported.

Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon would prefer to interview several candidates, with Blackburn boss Mark Hughes also a front-runner.

Hughes is the most highly rated young British-born boss in the Premier League and a former teammate of Gianfranco Zola, the man Abramovich is courting as a No2.

ANI

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