Premier League • England

Chelsea manager hunt: Serial trophy winner becomes shock ‘frontrunner’ to replace Potter

Luis Enrique and Zinedine Zidane

Former Barcelona and Spain manager Luis Enrique has emerged as a shock frontrunner to become the new Chelsea manager, according to reports. 

Graham Potter was sacked on Sunday following a 2-0 defeat to Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge, leaving the Blues in 11th place in the Premier League table.

Now, whoever succeeds the ex-Brighton boss at Chelsea will have a huge job on their hands to help them compete with Europe’s elite once again.

As previously reported by TEAMtalk, the current big favourite to replace Potter is Julian Nagelsmann, who has just been replaced by ex-Blue Thomas Tuchel at Bayern Munich.

However, Chelsea will reportedly require permission from Bayern to bring in the German coach, as he is still on gardening leave.

That may be hard to come by at the moment, as if Chelsea beat Real Madrid in the Champions League quarter-finals, they will face Bayern in the semis.

Todd Boehly is thought to be keen to bring in a new manager as soon as possible and as a result, the Blues could now look elsewhere for alternatives to Nagelsmann.

READ MORE: Next Chelsea manager: Neville names only option who can inherit swarm of Boehly signings without needing £300m more

Enrique tipped for Chelsea job

According to a report from the SunEnrique has now emerged as the frontrunner to replace Potter, with the coach having a number of admirers in the Chelsea hierarchy.

The 52-year-old enjoyed most of his success at Barcelona, where he guided a team full of top talents to unprecedented success – similar to the job he will be required to do at Chelsea.

Indeed, with superstars such as Lionel Messi, Neymar, Andres Iniesta and Xavi among his ranks, he led Barca to two league titles, three Copa del Reys and one Champions League victory.

However, Enrique struggled to repeat that success in charge of the Spain national team, after being defeated by Morocco on penalties in the World Cup last year.

The Blues have made several big-money signings this season, paying £107m for Enzo Fernandez and £88m for Mykhaylo Mudryk, for example, but they haven’t yet made any real impact in the Premier League.

Clearly, Chelsea need a manager who can command the respect of the big personalities in the changing room. While the Blues squad can’t be compared to his unbelievable Barca side, Enrique has proven that he can galvanise a group of big egos effectively.

Nagelsmann, Mauricio Pochettino, Frankfurt’s Oliver Glasner and Napoli’s Luciano Spaletti are all still potential candidates, but the Spaniard would definitely be a very interesting appointment if Boehly decides on him.

READ MORE: Second source confirms £90m Real Madrid raid on Chelsea is coming, as private Boehly feelings on shock sale emerge