It’s just a fact of life that in modern football, managers have very little job security. Quite often, the boss only has a small margin for error, and nowhere is this more evident than at the Chelsea Football Club of Roman Abramovich. The Russian oligarch and world’s 139th wealthiest man has a very itchy trigger finger for firing those who manage his club.
Abramovich has appointed nine managers in the past 10 years, and there’s been plenty of speculation about the long term future of current manager Antonio Conte.
Abramovich is a very secretive billionaire, one who doesn’t do many major public appearances, so when he came to Chelsea FC training to hold a meeting with Conte, amidst an environment in which it’s been widely reported that the Italian could get the sack, speculation naturally increased.
Conte maintains that he’s currently got plenty of rope with Abramovich.
If Conte does get the axe, it would certainly not be the first time Abramovich has sacked a manager just months after he guided Chelsea to a Premier League title, and by a very healthy margin.
Jose Mourinho was terminated in early December 2015, just seven months after his Chelsea side ran away with the title. Former Blues star Didier Drogba doesn’t see this pattern as odd or excessive however. The 39-year-old winner of four league titles during his two tenures at Chelsea sees this as just being par for the course.
“Everyone says Chelsea isn’t very stable. But in modern-day football, there is no coach who lasts more than three or four years at a club,” Drogba said in an interview with RMC.
“I asked him (Abramovich): ‘We have had how many managers in how many seasons?’ He replied: ‘But Didier, each time I have done it, we have got results.’”
Drogba was also asked in the interview if he believes that this an Abramovich m.o.- consistently turning over the manager.
“No, because when the managers come in they have carte blanche at the club,” he responded.
“They do what they want. Having said that, I don’t see the relationship with the chairman on a daily basis. But you can’t get into a conflict with your boss. If that’s the case, it’s that you want to leave.”