Carlo Ancelotti has revealed how he feels about Chelsea’s current situation and whether he would be willing to return to the club as their next manager following the departure of Graham Potter.
The Real Madrid coach was asked the question in a press conference ahead of his side’s tie against the Blues in the Champions League on Wednesday night.
Frank Lampard, who played under Ancelotti while he was at Stamford Bridge, is currently in temporary charge of the Blues, with the club seeking a permanent successor to Potter.
It is his second stint in charge of the club he played at for 12 years, with him previously managing Chelsea between August 2019 and January 2021.
But he did not get off to the start he wanted on the weekend, with his side losing 1-0 to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Saturday.
That result means Chelsea have won just three of their last ten games, hardly form they would want going into a tie against the European champions.
The quarter-final is the third time Madrid will have played Chelsea in the Champions League within the last three years.
The Blues beat the Spanish giants en route to lifting the trophy in 2021 before Los Blancos got one back against the English club last year.
But this time, Madrid will face a very different Chelsea.
The club is currently in a state of chaos, with Lampard the third manager to take charge this season.
Chelsea currently lie 12th in the league table, and their only route into the Champions League next season is to win this year’s competition.
As well as trying to lift the trophy, Chelsea are looking to appoint a new manager behind the scenes.
And although Julian Nagelsmann and Luis Enrique are reported to be the favourites, Ancelotti’s name has come up.
The Italian managed the west London club for two years between 2009 and 2011, lifting a Premier League trophy in that time.
ESPN reported earlier this week that he was being considered for a return to the club, but Ancelotti dismissed these reports earlier today.
A reporter asked the coach at his press conference if he was sad to see his former club closer to the bottom of the table than the top.
He then followed up that question by asking if he would ever consider going back, a question that brought a smile to the Italian’s face.
“Again?” he said while chuckling.
“I am sad yes. I have fantastic memories of this club and the people that are still working there.
“I am a supporter of Chelsea, of course. Because I spent two really nice years there.
“Be back? No. I hope that Lampard is able to do a fantastic job with them.”
That being sai, Ancelotti will be hoping his former club aren’t so fantastic that they knock Madrid out of the competition entirely.
Watch: Ancelotti speaks about Chelsea’s situation
It will not just be Ancelotti coming up against his former team on Wednesday night, but also Germany centre-back Rudiger, who signed for Madrid from Chelsea in the summer.
The defender played for the Blues for five years, winning the Europa League, Champions League, and an FA Cup among other trophies.
But earlier this week, he did not appear fazed by the prospect of a reunion.
“It has changed a lot and I don’t really know what to expect… It doesn’t look much like the team I played for,” Rudiger told Marca, via The Daily Mail.
“I expect quality, because they are very good players, but I don’t know what else we can find. It won’t be an easy game, but we are Real Madrid.”
The first leg of the quarter-finals takes place at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday at 20:00 GMT, with the return fixture set to take place on Wednesday 18 April.