Chelsea have had a disastrous 2015/16 season, which wound up costing Jose Mourinho his job, and will likely see several players following him out the door during the summer transfer window. The fallout might not be limited to just coaches and players, however, as Dan Levene is reporting that Michael Emenalo might be on the hot seat as well.
The signs that Emenalo's star is fading are subtle – but difficult to ignore. He is understood to have objected to two of the more controversial signings of the January window: the taking of Alexandre Pato on loan, and the buying outright of Matt Miazga. Both deals bore the fingerprints of football agent and fixer Kia Joorabchian – who immediately before had managed to secure a remarkable £25m for Chelsea to ship fringe midfielder Ramires to China.
Emenalo has always been a somewhat unpopular figure at the Bridge, likely due to the fact that the sacking of Ray Wilkins (whom he replaced) was only slightly less popular with the fanbase than the second sacking of Mourinho. He seemed to overcome that to some extent, however, when he helped to build the Blues' army of young talent into the envy of most European clubs.
With the hiring of Mourinho, however, many of those young players (and veterans) were deemed surplus to the requirements, and subsequently allowed to leave the club. When replacing these squad members, Emenalo and the board never seemed to find targets that the manager had any trust in, and with Guus Hiddink regularly employing the same basic setup and approach that Mourinho preferred, Chelsea's misfits still look like misfits, and the squad is still unacceptably thin, with no way to drastically change their approach due to the makeup of the first team.
Without a better understanding of the inner workings of Chelsea's upper management, it's unclear whether parting ways with Emenalo will actually accomplish anything, or simply be another band aid on a far more serious problem. Regardless of what happens with the Nigerian, though, the club need to do a far better job of getting the next manager and board on the same page going forward, with both giving ground from time to time to get this club back where it belongs.