thumbnail Hello, imagines how the Italian interim coach at Stamford Bridge might apply for the job long-term in the aftermath of yesterday’s 4-2 win at Aston Villa

Dear Mr Abramovich,

I would firstly like to take this moment to thank you for allowing me to step into Andre Villas-Boas’ pint-sized shoes, and to offer my services as Chelsea manager in a full-time capacity.

I would also like to commiserate the departure of the Portuguese prodigy and I am thankful he returned me to the club I ended my playing days at in 2002. If Frank Lampard and John Terry had not been so jealous of his boyishly good looks I am certain he could have enjoyed an even longer stay here than Carlo Ancelotti.

I am truly honoured you decided to hire me - a man fired from struggling with West Bromwich Albion last season - to take over from Juan Mata’s elder brother as interim manager at Stamford Bridge. I realise the temptation to hire Steve Bruce must have been overwhelming, and I am grateful for your support.

Comfortable wins against Birmingham City and throw-in enthusiasts Stoke City kicked off my tenure, however, I am sure you will agree my defining moment at the helm so far has been the Champions League quarter-final triumph over Napoli.

If the first-leg 3-1 loss was a pivotal reason for Andre’s sacking, surely the way in which I ignited the passions of the ‘old guard’ in the 4-1 second-leg was proof of my potential? The extra-time winner from Branislav Ivanovic was beyond my wildest dreams and I challenge you to find footage of a more excitable Italian outside a Dolmio advert.

Chelsea under Di Matteo
Mar 6
Birmingham 2-0 (A)
Mar 10
Stoke 1-0 (H)
Mar 14
Napoli 4-1 (H)
Mar 18
Leicester 5-2 (H)
Mar 21
Manchester City 1-2 (A)
Mar 24
Tottenham 0-0 (H)
Mar 27
Benfica 1-0 (A)
Mar 31
Aston Villa 4-2 (A)

I then proved my European nous was no fluke with a hard-fought 1-0 triumph at Benfica. Wednesday night’s home tie is a nailed-on victory and I am already practising preparatory speeches about how we were unable to handle Barcelona’s Lionel Messi in the semi-final.

I try to ignore the fact that the last coach under your leadership to get to the Champions League final was Avram Grant - a man who was unceremoniously sacked and subsequently went on to relegate two separate top flight sides in successive seasons. I am certain my future looks a lot greener and less grumpy.

I believe I have solved the ugly issues we had under Villas-Boas, such as having a defence leakier than the sweat ducts on referee Howard Webb’s shiny head. Most footballers are not the brightest of sparks so it took a few carefully drawn diagrams (colour coded to help Terry out) before the players realised they would be playing in the Europa League next season unless they pulled their socks up.

Threatening the likes of Frank Lampard and Ashley Cole that I would play them for 90 minutes against Lithuanian second division teams who earn roughly £100-a-week and have no qualms about hacking a millionaire’s legs to pieces seems to have done the trick.

The 4-2 win over Aston Villa on Saturday was surely further evidence I can be a hit under your forceful direction. Fernando Torres’ return to goalscoring form was probably the biggest positive to take from Villa Park. I still think you wasted £50 million on a man with more hair products than sense, although I will persevere to prove he is not just a pretty face with a rubbish right foot.

I know that we still sit fifth in the Premier League, but a fourth-placed finish at the very least is guaranteed under my guidance. The continuing obsession the English media have for the national job is bound to drive a wedge between Tottenham boss Harry Redknapp and his sanity.

Spurs are already in freefall and it is only a matter of time before Arsenal bottle it, as they consistently do every year. Newcastle United are an enigma this season but I promise you they will leave Stamford Bridge with their black and white tails between their legs when we face them in May.

Finally, if you do decide to sack me after giving me the full-time role then at least you will not have to fork out a truckload of cash in compensation. With my only experience being at MK Dons and the Baggies you could probably get away with paying me less than the dinner ladies at our Cobham training centre.

Yours faithfully,


Roberto Di Matteo