Marcel Desailly admits that he would be ‘very happy’ if Laurent Blanc was appointed Antonio Conte’s replacement at Chelsea.
Blanc was Desailly’s defensive partner for France at both Euro 96 and the 1998 World Cup, where Les Bleus defeated Brazil 3-0 in the final at the Stade de France to win the trophy for the first time.
The former centre-back is in line to become the new Chelsea manager, and Desailly believes that the former Bordeaux, France and PSG boss would be very good in the role.
The 52-year-old won the Ligue 1 title with Bordeaux as well as three league titles with PSG, including the domestic treble in 2015-16 before departing by mutual agreement. Blanc has yet to return to management, but is one of the names on Chelsea’s shortlist to replace Conte.
Fulham manager Slavisa Jokanovic is the other frontrunner, but Chelsea are reluctant to sack Conte as it would cost the club £9 million (€10.2m/$12.1m) in compensation.
Former Blues defender Desailly would like to see Blanc in the job, but thinks Conte deserves another chance to prove himself at Stamford Bridge.
“I would be very happy if Laurent Blanc becomes the new manager of Chelsea, but if it doesn’t work, I want to give another chance to Conte,” Desailly told Goal.
“He had to make some concessions about his system, his philosophy and his method of working. In 2016-2017, he won the Premier League with a revolutionary three-man defence. It was a weird year because a lot of teams were in transition, like Manchester City, Liverpool and United.”
Desailly played over 200 games for Chelsea between 1998 and 2004, winning the UEFA Super Cup and the FA Cup during his time with the Blues.
He thinks that the decision to sell Diego Costa proved to be the wrong one last season, with £60m (€68m/$80m) signing Alvaro Morata failing to live up to expectations, scoring just 11 goals in 31 Premier League appearances after joining from Real Madrid. The Blues signed Olivier Giroud from Arsenal in January to help improve their attack, and Desailly feels that it has taken both Giroud and Morata to replace Costa.
“With Diego Costa, somewhere they must regret it,” Desailly said.
“They believed that Morata had Diego Costa in him. No, it’s Giroud and Morata who together give Costa. He was a target man like Giroud can be, while possessing the agility shown by Morata.”