Ex-Tottenham and Man Utd man emerges as ‘first choice’ for Chelsea job as £60m star tipped to leave Spurs

Kieran McKenna has been heavily linked with the Chelsea job this week.Kieran McKenna has been heavily linked with the Chelsea job this week.
Kieran McKenna has been heavily linked with the Chelsea job this week. | Getty Images
The latest headlines from the Premier League as the summer transfer window approaches

Ipswich Town boss Kieran McKenna has emerged as the ‘first choice’ candidate to replace Mauricio Pochettino at Chelsea, according to reports. Pochettino, 52, guided the Blues back into Europe in his first season, but departed just days after the conclusion of the 2023/24 campaign by mutual consent.

Owner Todd Boehly is determined to hire a replacement who can continue to take the club on an upwards trajectory and ideally is after a ‘young dynamic manager’, who can implement an attacking brand of football.

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The Guardian understands that McKenna is the perfect candidate for the club given the criteria despite his lack of Premier League experience. The 38-year-old, who worked as a coach at Tottenham and Manchester United, kick-started his managerial career at Ipswich Town in 2021 and over the course of three seasons has helped transform the club’s fortunes by winning back-to-back promotions.

McKenna’s Ipswich won promotion by scoring a league-high 92 goals from 46 games and were lauded for their performances as they finished above the likes of Leeds United, Southampton and Norwich City despite operating on a much lower budget. The young coach's existing deal at Portman Road runs until 2027 and reports have claimed he will reject any new and improved offer to extend his stay while he considers his options.

McKenna is the overwhelming favourite for the Chelsea role but is also the second favourite for the Brighton job after Roberto De Zerbi’s shock exit. The Athletic understand Chelsea are keen to get a replacement at Stamford Bridge as soon as possible and claim the process will take days rather than weeks as the summer transfer window looms.

 11-goal attacker could leave Spurs as replacement is identified

Brazilian international striker Richarlison could leave Tottenham in the summer as Ange Postecoglou sets his sights on replacing him with Bournemouth forward Dominic Solanke. That’s according to reports from TalkSport which claim that the 27-year-old’s exit will come as part of a series of wholesale changes by Postecoglou.

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At the end of the season, the ex-Hoops boss told the press that 'change has to happen' at Tottenham this summer. He also claims that he has personally warned his team that more transfers are on the horizon after missing out on Champions League.

Richarlison enjoyed an improved season with 12 goals in 28 compared to the one in 27 he managed in his first campaign. But has largely lacked consistency for the Lillywhites bar a purple-patch between December and February where he scored nine times in 10 matches. Solanke, on the other hand, scored 19 in 38 matches last term - making him the joint fourth-highest scorer in the division.

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