Jose Mourinho's camp have already started making contingency plans in case he is sacked by Chelsea, sources have told ESPN FC, with the manager's representatives investigating the possibility of moving to Paris Saint-Germain or returning to Inter Milan.
Chelsea's 2-1 defeat at West Ham United on Saturday was their fifth in the Premier League this season, and that has led to the club's board tentatively discussing the idea of dismissing the Portuguese, according to ESPN FC sources.
Although Mourinho has not been given an ultimatum and Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich still wants to give him time to turn a poor situation around, that has not stopped both sides sounding out alternatives in the preparation for the worst-case scenario.
Sources have told ESPN FC that Mourinho's primary choice would be PSG, as all other top English and Spanish clubs are seen as off-limits, and the French champions are one of the few other sides with the money to match the elite and potentially win the Champions League.
A move to France would also give Mourinho the opportunity to become just the second manager, after Tomislav Ivic, to win leagues in five different countries.
There has already been contact between intermediaries of both camps, sources say, although it has been the same with Inter, where Mourinho won the Treble in 2010 and is still loved by the fans.
Those close to the Portuguese's inner circle believe it is conspicuous that he recently used an interview to say he would eventually like to go back to Inter, since he began to make similar noises about Chelsea in 2012-13 when it became clear he would be leaving Real Madrid.
On the other side, sources told ESPN FC Chelsea representatives have broached the idea of returning to Carlo Ancelotti, who left the English champions in 2011. Abramovich's long-term target is Pep Guardiola, but the Bayern Munich boss currently has no interest in going to Chelsea.