Ancelotti: No problem if Chelsea want me out
Carlo Ancelotti today appeared all but resigned to his fate as Chelsea manager after insisting it would "not be a problem" if club owner Roman Abramovich sacked him.
Ancelotti looks a dead man walking at Stamford Bridge after overseeing what is set to be the club's worst season since Abramovich's takeover almost eight years ago.
Speculation has already moved on to the identity of the Italian's replacement, with the likes of Guus Hiddink, Frank Rijkaard, Andre Villas Boas and Marcello Lippi all linked with the job.
An extremely dignified Ancelotti today insisted he had yet to discuss his future with Abramovich and was focusing on helping third-placed Chelsea finish as high as possible in the Barclays Premier League.
But he added: "The club can decide if I have to continue here or they want to change.
"This is not a problem. The club has the possibility to judge my job.
"If they are not happy, they can change without problem."
Confirming he had only briefly spoken to Abramovich after Tuesday night's Champions League exit at Manchester United, he said: "The most important thing for a club, and for a manager, is to have a good relationship with the club, the owner.
"When this relationship is not good, you have to change.
"Until now, the relationship with the owner is fantastic.
"He has supported me this season when we didn't achieve important results.
"If, at the end of the season, the owner decides my job was not good enough, this is not a problem.
"I know football. I know clubs sometimes want to change the manager.
"I will try to do my best, because I want to stay here.
"If there is a possibility to do that, I will be happy.
"There are a lot of people saying my future will not be here next season, but I'm not sure about this.
"We have to wait until the end of the season."
Ancelotti masterminded Chelsea's first-ever double last term - his maiden season in English football - but he admitted this did not make him bulletproof.
"Everyone was happy to win the double last year, but this is the past," he said.
"This season has not been a good season for us."
Ancelotti's philosophical response to his potential sacking is partly down to his acceptance of the way Abramovich has operated in the past, with the two previous managers who failed to deliver a trophy also given the boot.
But it also suggests he feels he is not to blame for much of what has gone wrong this season and that he knows he would have no problem gaining employment elsewhere.
The 51-year-old has made no secret of his desire to return one day to Roma. Ancelotti spent much of his playing career with the Giallorossi, who are currently managerless and set to be under ambitious new ownership by the start of next week.
Nevertheless, he could be forgiven for lashing out at the way he appears to have been undermined in his attempts to build on last year's double success.
Senior players were allowed to leave and were not replaced, assistant manager Ray Wilkins was sacked for seemingly no good reason, while Ancelotti has also felt compelled to keep playing £50million flop Fernando Torres in must-win games.
But the Blues boss refused to discuss how much blame he should take himself for what has gone wrong and how much should be apportioned elsewhere.
"It's not the moment to find guilt," he said ahead of tomorrow's trip to West Brom.
"It's a moment to stay focused on the next game, do our best, and look to the end of the season.
"We can judge at the end what was wrong and what was good."
Ancelotti, who insisted he had not lost confidence in his own ability, added: "To speak now about which kind of change the club wants to do for the next season, for new transfers, about my future, it's not the right time.
"We have seven games until the end of the season and every one of us has to try and do their best in these seven games.
"After that, we can speak about this."