Paul Merson: The manager who could replace Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea FC

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Paul Merson says that Eddie Howe could be a contender to take over from Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea FC in the summer.

Sarri has endured something of a mixed first season at Stamford Bridge after he was brought in as Antonio Conte’s replacement last July.

The Blues have struggled to find consistent form in the Premier League and they currently find themselves in a four-way battle with Tottenham, Manchester United and Arsenal for the two remaining Champions League qualification spots.

Chelsea FC do have another potential route into next season’s Champions League by winning the Europa League this season.

However, former Arsenal star Merson feels that Bournemouth boss Howe could be a possible contender to take over at Stamford Bridge should Chelsea FC part company with Sarri in the summer.

Speaking in an interview with Sky Sports News on Saturday, Merson said: “If Roman Abramovich is still there next year and he hasn’t sold the club, Eddie Howe could be the next manager of Chelsea.”

Asked whether Howe would be a good fit for Chelsea FC, Merson replied: “I think [he would be] great.

“He plays an expansive game of football. Chelsea fans want to see action and I know the owner doesn’t go as much now but he also wants to see action.

“Sarri was brought in to play the Napoli way. Score lots of goals and play gung-ho football.

“It was never going to happen but Howe plays that way. He opens the game up a lot better than Chelsea do.”

Chelsea FC are currently preparing for their home Premier League clash against Burnley at Stamford Bridge on Monday night.

The Blues are aiming to try and finish in the top four this season after they ended up in fifth place and won the FA Cup in Conte’s final campaign in charge last term.

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