Chelsea owners leak more details about the candidate they want; “mystery” fourth option is names

When multiple journalists report the same thing at the same time in cases like this you know exactly what’s happening – there’s a brief going down.

That’s what’s happened this morning, with several of the top writers on the Chelsea beat all using the same language at the same time to reveal that the “mystery” candidate on the Blues’ managerial shortlist is… Roberto De Zerbi.

Kieran Gill of the Daily Mail reported that Chelsea want a “forward thinking and progressive head coach who has experience in English football.

“Roberto de Zerbi is the fourth name on Chelsea’s shortlist,” he confirms.

The exact same minute, Ben Jacobs Tweeted “Roberto De Zerbi is the fourth name on Chelsea’s final shortlist to replace Mauricio Pochettino” and added that the Blues want a “progressive manager with English football and Premier League experience.”

This rules out candidates like Xavi and Ruben Amorim, who have been mentioned a lot and have top tier European experience.

Not a great fit with Chelsea’s structure

De Zerbi certainly got Brighton playing some thrilling stuff, but it only lasted for about 6 months before it unravelled. He had some bad injury issues, but he might have that at Chelsea too. It’s hard to get too excited for a coach whose project was quite dangerously running out of steam in his last job, given this would also be a huge step up for him.

His football certainly fits the bill for stated aims of this ownership, but we’re not sure he’s going to be any less demanding than Pochettino was. None of the four candidates on this shortlist are perfect, and none of them really seem to fit the bill in terms of what the owners want. Fans are going to be frustrated with whichever of these choices gets picked, and it’s very unclear where we stand now.

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