Benitez odds for Chelsea slashed as Roman looks to conquer Europe

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Former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez has moved to 3/1 to become the next Chelsea manger after a splurge of bets, led to whisperings that the Spaniard could be set to take over at the Bridge in the summer, seeing his odds slashed from 8/1.

Roberto Di Matteo has been in charge since Andre Villas Boas was relieved of his duties at the beginning of March, since then Chelsea have lost only once in 11 contests in all competitions, a run that has seen Di Matteo installed as the 9/4 favourite to take the job on a full-time basis.

However, owner Roman Abramovich has made no secret of his desire to win the Champions League and if Di Matteo fails to do so this season then it is though he will turn to Benitez, who is widely regarded as one of the best managers in European competition.

Rafa has famously won the Champions League with Liverpool and also has the Uefa Cup on his CV from his time at Valencia. It could be these credentials, plus his experience of the Premier League, that inspire Abramovich to opt for the ex-Inter Milan manager.

If not Benitez, then it is difficult to rule out a return for Jose Mourinho at 7/2.

The current Real Madrid boss harboured a fractured relationship with the Russian owner, but is regarded as a legend by fans and players alike, and with Los Blancos title hopes in the balance he could be persuaded to return to West London.

Another man with European credentials is Fabio Capello. The Italian has been linked with jobs in his native Italy but has so far remained tight-lipped as to when he will return to the game, an approach from Chelsea may be too good to turn down for the once England manager and he can be backed at 14/1.

The calibre of manager Chelsea can attract will depend on qualification for next season’s Champions League and with the Blues currently sixth you can get 7/4 on them doing so.

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