Ancelotti left in limbo amid Chelsea silence

LONDON - Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti still has no idea whether he should be calling a removal van after the club stayed silent amid fervent speculation over his future.

The Italian waved to fans not knowing if it was arrivederci or a final goodbye as the team walked round the pitch on Sunday after their 2-2 draw with Newcastle United, their last appearance at Stamford Bridge this term.

They visit Everton on the final day of the Premier League next Sunday effectively assured of second place behind champions Manchester United, but whether that will be enough for owner Roman Abramovich after a trophyless season remains to be seen.

Last term's double in Ancelotti's first season is a distant memory and a look back at how ruthless Abramovich has dealt with previous managers does not make happy reading for the Italian.

Claudio Ranieri was axed after finishing runner-up in the Premier League and reaching a Champions League semi-final.

Back-to-back league titles did not save fans hero Jose Mourinho when a sticky patch of form arrived and Avram Grant was sacked after being one John Terry slip away from winning the Champions League final. Luiz Felipe Scolari lasted seven months.

"I don't know what happens, we have to wait and after that I can explain. We have to just wait one week, it is not a long period and see what happens," said Ancelotti, whose side also lost to Manchester United in the Champions League last eight.

"If my job is good I will stay. If they think my job was not good I have to go. In my opinion sometimes I did a good job, sometimes I could do better."


His future may hinge on who Chelsea could bring in.

Former Russia coach Guus Hiddink, who won the FA Cup as Chelsea caretaker between Scolari's sacking and Ancelotti's arrival and is reported to be a favourite of billionaire Abramovich, is under contact with the Turkey national team.

His agent Cees van Nieuwenhuizen told Reuters last month there was "no chance" of Hiddink leaving Turkey before November and he was set to honour a four-year deal signed in 2010.

Porto's highly-rated boss Andre Villas Boas has said reports linking him with a move were "absurd" and that he plans to stay.

Mourinho has talked of having unfinished business at his beloved Chelsea but is not likely to leave his Real Madrid project after one season and fell out with Abramovich anyway.

Ancelotti may have an exit strategy with former club AS Roma yet to announce what is happening with their coaching situation.

The Serie A side, who missed out on a Champions League place, appointed Vincenzo Montella as interim coach until the end of the season after Ranieri resigned in February.

Recent poor results may mean Montella is not kept on by the club's new American owners.

It's a punishing verdict for Roma," Montella said after Sunday's late 2-1 loss at Catania ruled them out of fourth spot.