LEONID SLUTSKY is living in the Chelsea hotel and learning English in a bid to replace Antonio Conte.
Antonio Conte signed a three-year contract worth around £6.5million a year when he took over at Chelsea last summer.
But Conte has refused to rule out leaving Stamford Bridge despite Chelsea being on the brink of a Premier League and FA Cup double.
Express Sport understands Conte has emerged as the shock No 1 target to replace Luis Enrique when he leaves Barcelona at the end of the season.
Conte is also wanted back in his homeland with Inter Milan, although Chelsea were planning to discuss a new deal with him later this month.
But it appears as if Blues owner Roman Abramovich is lining up a Plan B option should Conte leave.
Abramovich has been hosting his close friend and former CSKA Moscow boss Leonid Slutsky in recent weeks.
Slutsky has taken up residence at the Chelsea hotel at Stamford Bridge since leaving CSKA Moscow in December.
His last match was a 3-1 Champions League defeat to Chelsea’s London rivals Tottenham at Wembley.
But the 45-year-old has spent most of his time in London since January, having been good pals with Abramovich for over a decade.
Slutsky has been learning English and has been a regular at Chelsea matches and the club’s Cobham training ground.
He was pictured alongside Abramovich, and intriguingly Conte, for Chelsea’s Youth Cup Final victory over Manchester City at Stamford Bridge last month.