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Old managerial candidate re-emerges as new favorite on eve of Conte’s final Chelsea game

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Welcome back, Leonardo Jardim

AS Monaco v Stoke City - Preseason Friendly
lol, not Mark Hughes
Photo by Jean-Guy Python/Getty Images

Round and around and around and around and around we go. Though many have fallen out of the merry-go-around already. Thomas Tuchel is at PSG. Roberto Mancini has taken over the Azzurri. Max Allegri and Maurizio Sarri are both staying where they are. The process of elimination had left us with Luis Enrique. Or so we thought.

Turns out the Lucho story is just a big circle as well, which continues to rotate between links to clubs and then stories that his wage demands are too high. Perhaps one day he’ll lower them. For now, here comes the rotation away.

Generally, we don’t pay much attention to what Spanish media tends to say. They push their own club’s agendas just a bit too much, while others like Don Balon or Diario Gol just speculate endlessly and hilariously.

But Barcelona-based SPORT saying that Luis Enrique is once again out as favorite for the Chelsea job is perhaps noteworthy. (And here’s Marca saying the same thing, taking no pleasure — none whatsoever! — in playing up Lucho’s “arrogance”.)

In his stead, Leonardo Jardim’s back on top. The current coach of AS Monaco had been briefly, but realistically linked at the start of April — we even did a profile on him that you should read! — but talk had gone mostly quiet since then. This latest report puts him firmly in the lead however.

Jardim’s got two years left on his current contract so Chelsea might have to pay a transfer fee, though the business relationship between the two clubs is fairly solid (with multiple deals over the past few years, including the Falcao wage-relief nonsense and the Bakayoko saga) and the two owners are on good terms, so perhaps we can work an advantageous deal.

In any case, welcome back to the top of the queue, Leonardo Jardim. Until the next twist in the tale, that is.