On This Day in 2011: Chelsea sack Carlo Ancelotti

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Chelsea sacked manager Carlo Ancelotti on this day in 2011, one year after he had led the club to a domestic double.

The Italian, then 51, won the Premier League title and the FA Cup with the Blues in 2010, but was ruthlessly dismissed by club owner Roman Abramovich after failing to deliver a trophy the following season.

The Blues finished second in the title race, nine points adrift of Manchester United, after exits in the Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup and Ancelotti fell victim to his earlier success.

Chelsea finished empty handed for the first time in three years and a club statement read: “This season’s performances have fallen short of expectations and the club feels the time is right to make this change ahead of next season’s preparations.”

Loyalty to managers was never one of Abramovich’s characteristics.


After a 1-0 defeat at Everton on the final day of the season, Ancelotti had just given his post-match press conference when chief executive Ron Gourlay was reported to have taken him to one side in the corridor of Goodison Park and delivered the news.

Ancelotti’s dismissal left Chelsea in the hunt for their seventh manager in the eight years since Abramovich took control of the club in 2003.

The Russian billionaire ended Jose Mourinho’s first spell in charge four months after he had delivered back-to-back trophies.

Both of Ancelotti’s predecessors, Avram Grant and Luiz Felipe Scolari, and the man who succeeded him, Andre Villas-Boas, were all dispensed within eight months.

Ancelotti, who had twice won the Champions League with former club AC Milan before arriving at Stamford Bridge, went on to manage Paris St Germain, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Napoli and Everton.

He returned to Real Madrid in 2021 and, after leading them to their domestic crown, became the first manager to win the title in each of Europe’s top five leagues – Serie A, Premier League, Ligue 1, Bundesliga and LaLiga.

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