Ancelotti left his post less than two hours after Sunday’s final Barclays Premier League match of the season at Everton, which the Blues lost 1-0. That saw the Blues finish second, level on points with Manchester City.
That heralded the end of their worst season since Roman Abramovich bought the club in 2003, with Ancelotti failing to win a trophy in what was his second year at the helm.
A year ago he led Chelsea to the Barclays Premier League and FA Cup Double but he was unable to replicate that success this season and paid the price for a Champions League exit to Manchester United who also pipped them to the title.
A statement on the club website yesterday confirmed: “Chelsea Football Club can confirm that Carlo Ancelotti parted company with the club today (Sunday, 22 May).
The victory, secured thanks to goals from Javier Hernandez and Nemanja Vidic, gives Sir Alex Ferguson’s side a six-point lead with two games remaining in the Premier League season. Only a minor miracle will now prevent them from securing a fourth league title in five seasons, and surpassing the overall record they currently hold with Liverpool.
Any hopes Chelsea had of taking top spot with a victory were undone as early as 36 seconds into the game when David Luiz failed to cut out a pass from Park Ji-Sung and Javier Hernandez, clinical as ever, beat Petr Cech for the 19th goal of his debut season in England.
Manchester United robbed Chelsea of their only chance left for silverware last night at Old Trafford. Chelsea and Shakhtar Donetsk just weren’t good enough on the night as United and Barcelona progressed respectively to the semi-finals of the Champions League without much trouble.
United earned their place in the last four for the fourth time in five seasons with a 2-1 success over Chelsea – who ended the match with 10-men after Ramires was sent-off in the second-half – and a 3-1 triumph on aggregate which will heap the pressure on the losers’ manager Carlo Ancelotti.
United – whose goals came from Javier Hernandez and Korean Park Ji-Sung – will play either Schalke 04 or holders Inter Milan, with the Italian side requiring a miracle in Germany on Wednesday as they trail 5-2.
Manchester United have not won at Stamford Bridge in almost a decade, but that all changed on Wednesday night when they took a slender lead in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final by beating Chelsea 0 – 1.
Wayne Rooney‘s foul-mouthed celebration after scoring a hat-trick at West Ham on Saturday may have landed him in hot water with the Football Association, but he carried on his fine form against Chelsea with an away goal for United to take back to Old Trafford for the return match next Tuesday.
The crucial moment arrived midway through the first half when Ryan Giggs superbly controlled a long pass from Michael Carrick and cut the ball back for Rooney to slide home a composed finish that went in off the post.
Chelsea almost equalised on the stroke of half-time as Fernando Torres guided an effort against the post and Frank Lampard’s volley on the rebound was cleared off the line by Patrice Evra.
Torres went close again in the second half but still could not open his account for the Bluesas Edwin van der Sar pulled off a magnificent acrobatic save to claw out his well-placed header.
Frank Lampard scored twice and captain John Terry first to inspire Chelsea to a 1 – 3 win over Blackpool at Bloomfield Road on Monday night to keep the Blues’ title hopes afloat.
Skipper Terry, 30, opened the scoring with a first-half header before vice-captain Lampard, 32, ended relegation-threatened Blackpool’s resistance with two goals in the second period, one a penalty.
Jason Puncheon, who hit the post for the home team in the first half, pulled a goal back with four minutes to go when he drilled a low left-footed shot into the corner of the net.
Chelsea are fourth in the table with 51 points from 28 matches. They have a game in hand on leaders Manchester United (60 points) and visit the Old Trafford side later in the season.
“I don’t think we were at our best today. At times we were a bit sloppy but luckily with a bit of quality up front we won it,” Lampard told Sky Sports.
Chelsea came from behind to beat Manchester United 2 – 1 thanks to a late penalty by Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.
United deservedly led through Wayne Rooney’s 29th-minute shot but defender David Luiz equalised nine minutes into the second half.
The champions, unbeaten at home against United since 2002, surged forward after that and took the points after Chris Smalling tripped substitute Yuri Zhirkov.
United remain top on 60 points, four clear of Arsenal, who have a game in hand. Manchester City are third on 50 with champions Chelsea now up to fourth on 48.
“It was a great performance by us. We didn’t deserve that,” United manager Alex Ferguson told Sky Sports. “It’s three years in a row the referees’ decisions have changed the game.
“I’m proud of my players tonight, they’ve endured a lot of decisions against them and they’ve done their best.”
The two strikers, together with Benfica defender David Luiz who also joined Chelsea on deadline day, took spending in the final hour of the transfer window to around £100 million (approximately R1,1 billion) as the club’s owners flexed their financial muscles.
Torres cost Chelsea a widely reported £50 million — a new British record by quite a margin — after the 22-year-old Carroll signed a five and a half year deal with Liverpool, his fee reported to be £35 million.
Carroll will not have to fill the hole left by the 26-year-old Torres alone, however, after Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish also completed the signing of Uruguayan forward Luis Suarez from Ajax for a further €26.5 million (approximately R260,5 million).
Torres could face Liverpool in a blue Chelsea shirt on Sunday when the sides meet in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge and should expect a frosty reception from the Liverpool fans who idolised him after his 2007 move from Atletico Madrid.