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Talking Claudio Ranieri, AS Roma, Carlo Ancelotti, and Chelsea FC

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BOLOGNA ITALY - JANUARY 30:  Claudio Ranieri coach of Bologna looks on during the Serie A match between Bologna FC and AS Roma at Stadio Renato Dall'Ara on January 30 2011 in Bologna Italy.  (Photo by Roberto Serra/Getty Images)
BOLOGNA ITALY - JANUARY 30: Claudio Ranieri coach of Bologna looks on during the Serie A match between Bologna FC and AS Roma at Stadio Renato Dall'Ara on January 30 2011 in Bologna Italy. (Photo by Roberto Serra/Getty Images)
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What do Chelsea FC have in common with AS Roma? They used to employ Claudio Ranieri to manage their clubs, and now they don't. After a series of bizarre performances by the Serie A team, including a 3-2 home loss in the Champions League to Shaktar Donesk, and a 2-0 home loss to 2nd place Napoli, Ranieri's particular brand of football was on its last legs, and Roma throwing away a 3-0 halftime lead at Bolonga to lose 4-3 was the final straw. The only way for Ranieri to escape the axe was by falling on his sword, and, well, he's now Roma's ex-manager.

This isn't just Chelsea related based on Raniera having the helm of the team prior to Jose Mourinho's arrival. Current Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti has ties with the Serie A team as well, being a lifelong fan, and many papers have taken up the task of weaving together Chelsea's poor run of form with the suddenly vacant managerial spot in Rome. Is it true that Carlo could flee from a disappointing season in London to take the helm at Roma? Certainly. Will it happen? I suspect not, although anything is of course possible.

Right now, Carlo Ancelotti is Chelsea's manager, under contract and being very well compensated for doing his job. I disagree with some of his decisions lately, but one thing about Ancelotti that's always appeared totally unimpeachable is his character. Based on his many interviews with the media, he simply doesn't seem like the type to leave a club in the lurch in the middle of a season, especially one he may have helped create (there are reasonable, if not convincing arguments for sacking Carlo).

If Ancelotti is indeed heading to Roma, my guess is that it'll happen in the summertime rather than mid-season, despite the story that the media is trying to sell us. Unless, that is, Chelsea give him the boot at some point, which is also a very real possibility. We've been told that Roman Abramovich has given Carlo his support by spending millions upon millions of pounds during the January transfer window, but acquiring David Luiz and Fernando Torres would hardly be frowned upon by any other manager on the planet. It remains to be seen just how Chelsea's owner will react to being out of both domestic cups and the title race...