Chelsea fire Jose Mourinho after dismal run of defeats
Chelsea have parted company with Jose Mourinho after two days of crisis board meetings.
Blues bosses insisted Mourinho had left the club "by mutual consent" in a statement on Thursday afternoon.
Mourinho has been relieved of his role just seven months after guiding Chelsea to the Premier League title, owing to the dismal run of nine defeats in 16 league matches this term.
"Chelsea Football Club and Jose Mourinho have today parted company by mutual consent," the London club’s statement read. "All at Chelsea thank Jose for his immense contribution since he returned as manager in the summer of 2013.
"His three league titles, FA Cup, Community Shield and three League Cup wins over two spells make him the most successful manager in our 110-year history. But both Jose and the board agreed results have not been good enough this season and believe it is in the best interests of both parties to go our separate ways.
"The club wishes to make clear Jose leaves us on good terms and will always remain a much-loved, respected and significant figure at Chelsea. His legacy at Stamford Bridge and in England has long been guaranteed and he will always be warmly welcomed back to Stamford Bridge.
"The club’s focus is now on ensuring our talented squad reaches its potential."
Guus Hiddink, Brendan Rodgers and Juande Ramos have all been rumored as potential short-term replacements for Mourinho, to tide Chelsea over until the end of the season.
The Blues are thought to favor Italy manager Antonio Conte as their top choice for a long-term appointment, but his contract runs until after Euro 2016.
The final match of Mourinho’s second spell as Chelsea boss ultimately proved Monday’s 2-1 Premier League loss at surprise table-toppers Leicester City.
Mourinho accepted in the wake of that defeat in the east midlands that Chelsea could not now challenge for a top-four finish to secure Champions League qualification for next season.
The Blues sit just a point above the relegation zone after an incredibly poor run of league form, that has led to accusations of player unrest and amid the continued fallout of club medic Dr. Eva Carneiro’s acrimonious exit.
Carneiro continues to pursue an unfair dismissal claim against the club, after Mourinho branded his medical staff "naive" to rush onto the field to treat Eden Hazard in the 2-2 draw with Swansea on Aug. 8.
Carneiro’s role was downgraded, leading to her leaving the club on Sept. 22 and now seeking legal recourse.