Chelsea are believed to be becoming increasingly concerned they'll fail in their attempts to lure in Zinedine Zidane as their next manager, ahead of the appeal deadline date for their FIFA-imposed transfer ban.
The Blues received a two window ban from the football world governing body last month, after breaching regulations in a number of cases while in the process of acquiring footballers under the age of 18. The club were also fined £460k, and a further £390k by the FA. Chelsea have until Monday to submit an appeal to overturn the ban, or more likely, delay it for one window.
According to the Sun, Chelsea have grown increasingly impatient with their current manager Maurizio Sarri, and are eager to replace him with former Real Madrid boss Zidane in the summer. However, the report claims the Frenchman would need a £200m transfer war chest to overhaul the Blues' playing squad, and wouldn't join the club if the FIFA ban is upheld.
In the past, clubs such as Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atlético Madrid have had their transfer bans delayed upon the submission of an appeal, which gave them time to secure new recruits while the ban was still pending. The Blues may well look to take the same approach, which could go a long way to convincing Zidane to join the west London outfit.
Juventus are also believed to be very interested in acquiring Zidane's services, as Massimiliano Allegri has been hotly tipped to leave Turin in pursuit of a new challenge at the end of the season. The Blues, should their ban be upheld, are highly unlikely to be able to rival Juventus for Zidane, given the subsequent inability for the coach to build his own team.
In other news, ex-Chelsea defender Nathan Ake has claimed he was 'broken' while playing for the Blues under their former manager José Mourinho. The Bournemouth ace, who had started to flourish before the 'Special One' returned for a second spell at the club, was immediately dropped by the coach, and subsequently sold to the south coast side in 2017.