Posted November 21, 2012 on AP on Fox
With seemingly limitless amounts of money and an insatiable desire for winning titles, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has the makings of being one of the best bosses in football. A small slip-up here or a tiny miscue there, however, and you better start looking for a new job. Roberto Di Matteo became the latest Chelsea coach to get the ax on Wednesday, fired only hours after the London club lost to Juventus 3-0 in the Champions League, leaving the defending champions on the brink of elimination from Europe's top competition. A coach getting fired is certainly nothing new in the world of football, especially after a heavy loss like the rout in Turin. But Di Matteo is the eighth manager to work for Abramovich since he bought the club in 2003, making his soon-to-be-named replacement No. 9 in nine years under the Russian owner. ''The overnight sacking of Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo demonstrates, not decisive leadership, but knee jerk authoritarianism,'' said Chris Roebuck, a leadership expert at Cass Business School in London. ''Yes, in the world of football, as in business, sometimes things don't go the way we want, but a short-term view of life can end up being counterproductive to both long-term performance and revenue generation.'' Since Abramovich took over at Chelsea, the team has become a perennial title favorite. In 2005, the Blues won only their second English league title. They repeated a year later, but manager Jose Mourinho was soon fired for poor results in the Champions League - the title Abramovich so desperately wanted. Avram Grant replaced Mourinho and led the team to the Champions League final for the first time in club history in 2008. The Blues, however, lost to Manchester United on penalty kicks and Grant was soon out, too. Other big-name coaches then came and went - including Luiz Felipe Scolari, Guus Hiddink on an interim basis, Carlo Ancelotti and Andre Villas-Boas - creating an atmosphere of instability at the club. Conversely, managers like Alex Ferguson at Manchester United and Arsene Wenger at Arsenal have stayed put, bringing a sense of consistency to their teams. Rio Ferdinand, an outspoken defender who has played at United for 10 years, called the decision to fire Di Matteo ''madness.'' ''The stability at our club is something our manager rarely gets praise for...don't under estimate that,'' Ferdinand wrote on Twitter. Through all the hirings and firings, Chelsea has continued to perform at the top level on the field, even winning a fourth league title under Ancelotti in 2010. But it was under Di Matteo's leadership - as the interim manager after Villas-Boas was dismissed late last season - that things really clicked. Chelsea first eliminated defending champion Barcelona from the Champions League semifinals and then beat Liverpool in the FA Cup final. Two weeks later, Abramovich finally got to lift the long sought-after Champions League trophy after a penalty shootout victory over Bayern Munich. Not long after the win in Munich, the Swiss-born former Italy international Di Matteo was awarded the manager's job on a permanent basis. ''We will never forget the huge contribution (Di Matteo) has made to this club's history and he will always be welcome at Stamford Bridge,'' Chelsea said Wednesday in a statement on its website. This season, things started well for Chelsea in the Premier League. The team led the league for much of the season, but has recently dropped to third behind defending champion Manchester City and Manchester United. In the Champions League, Chelsea is in third place in its four-team group with only one match to go. Although the Blues will be favored to beat Danish team Nordsjaelland at home on Dec. 5, Chelsea will still be eliminated if Juventus gets at least a draw against already-qualified Shakhtar Donetsk in the other group match. That put advancement to the knockout round out of Chelsea's hands, and essentially put Di Matteo out of work. The favorite to replace Di Matteo as manager is Rafa Benitez, who led Liverpool to the 2005 Champions League title and the final in 2007. The Spaniard has been out of coaching since leaving Inter Milan in 2010. Another possibility is Pep Guardiola, the former Barcelona coach who stepped down at the end of last season after winning three Spanish league titles and two Champions League trophies. Abramovich is said to be an admirer of Guardiola, who oversaw Barcelona's impressive rise with a passing-based attack that has many calling it the greatest team of all time. But whoever takes over, it will likely be someone who knows that failure to win both the Premier League and Champions League titles will put his job in immediate danger. ''This unplanned departure now leaves the club rudderless at a critical time and presents a significant challenge in finding a new successor,'' said Roebuck, the leadership expert. ''Who would accept such a role with the chance of being sacked in the middle of the night? This event just goes to confirm the significant dangers of command and control leadership.''
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Why Guardiola will never sign for Abramovich

Why Guardiola will never sign for Abramovich - originally posted on Soccerlens.comSeconds after Wednesday’s sacking of Roberto Di Matteo, there was only one name on the lips of Chelsea supporters and at the end of hash tags the world over.  Having left arguably the best job – and certainly the best team – in the world, Pep Guardiola was suitably rested and quite possibly ready...

Chelsea managers under owner Roman Abramovich

A look at the eight Chelsea managers that have served under Russian owner Roman Abramovich: --- Claudio Ranieri Ranieri was the first manager to be fired by Abramovich. The Italian, who became known as the ''Tinkerman'' because of his tendency to fiddle with his team, was hired in September 2000 by previous Chelsea owner Ken Bates. He was fired in May 2004 despite...

OSG Prem: DiMatteo Sacked At Chelsea, Rafa On The Clock...???

((HT: goal.com)) Roman Abramovich is not one to be patient with what he perceives as failure... And when manager Roberto di Matteo wasn't having the results both he and Abramovich wanted, it meant that the manager was gone... Again... Here's di Matteo's last interview thinking he was still gonna stay- after his loss to Juventus 3-0 this week in Champions League...

Di Matteo Sacked, Benítez Hired At Chelsea

Roman Abramovich made some swift changes this week at Stamford BridgeThe post Di Matteo Sacked, Benítez Hired At Chelsea appeared first on The Soccer Daily.

Another bullet for Chelsea manager

Two hundred and sixty two days. That's all Roberto Di Matteo got. Just 262 days to turn Chelsea around. To reinvigorate an old, lumbering, underperforming, mutinous team and win some things. He pulled off that daunting task, too. He bagged the 2011-12 UEFA Champions League against near-impossible odds after taking over an imploded team on an interim basis. He snapped up the...

Chelsea's managers under Abramovich

Chelsea managers under Russian owner Roman Abramovich: Claudio Ranieri - Sept. 15, 2000-May 31, 2004 Jose Mourinho - June 2, 2004-Sept. 20, 2007 Avram Grant - Sept. 21, 2007-May 24, 2008 Luiz Felipe Scolari - June 11, 2008-Feb. 9, 2009 Guus Hiddink - Feb. 11, 2009-May 30, 2009 Carlo Ancelotti - June 1, 2009-May 22, 2011 Andre Villas-Boas - June 22, 2011-March 4, 2012 Roberto...

Di Matteo not focused on his future

Roberto Di Matteo has refused to contemplate the implications of Chelsea crashing out of the Champions League for his own future ahead of their potential do-or-die clash at Juventus . It was deja vu for football's most trigger-happy club on Monday as Di Matteo became the latest Blues manager to face serious questions about his job security following a slump in results. And...

Newcastle Boss Lashes Out At Chelsea Owner

We must say it was a complete shock when we read this morning that Roberto di Matteo had been sacked as the Chelsea manager, just a short six months after he had led Chelsea to the European Champions League trophy – for the first time in Chelsea’s history. Roman Abramovich – sacked eight managers so [...]

Chelsea is sack-predictable – Andre Villas Boas

Chelsea is sack-predictable – Andre Villas Boas - originally posted on Soccerlens.comFormer Chelsea manager Andre Villas Boas believes the Blues’ sacking of Roberto Di Matteo was not at all a surprise. Villas Boas was replaced at Stamford Bridge by the Italian and saw his replacement lead the club to Champions League and FA Cup glory, however, after just three months in full...

Column: Chelsea should sack Torres, not Di Matteo

Buying an item of clothing that didn't suit us or a gadget that didn't do what we hoped is a mistake many of us make. But not many of us lose our jobs over it. Roberto Di Matteo was a brave man for making it clear to all of Europe that his boss, Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, made a 50-million pound mistake in the shape of super-flop striker Fernando Torres. Dropping Torres...

Liverpool makes move for Sturridge

Each day we'll bring you the very latest tabloid rumors as the biggest clubs around splash the cash to bolster their rosters. True or not, they're always entertaining... DAILY MAIL Roman Abramovich will try to persuade Pep Guardiola to become Chelsea manager before the summer if he fires Roberto Di Matteo. Roy Hodgson is considering bringing in a psychologist to help...
Soccer News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.