Gossip column: Mourinho, Pato, Simeone, Townsend, Willian

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Chelsea have a shortlist of three potential interim managers - former bosses Roberto Di Matteo and Guus Hiddink, and ex-Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers - if Jose Mourinho is sacked. (Sunday Express)external-link

The Blues are also "on red alert" as Argentine coach Diego Simeone, 45, is set to quit Atletico Madrid in the summer. (Sunday People)external-link

Chelsea
Chelsea's current plight dominates most of Sunday's back pages, including the Mail on Sunday's

Mourinho appeared to defy his FA stadium ban by communicating with Chelsea assistants Steve Holland and Rui Faria during the defeat by Stoke. (Mail on Sunday)external-link

Liverpool have reached an agreement in principle to sign Brazilian striker Alexandre Pato, 26, from Corinthians. (Tutto Mercato Web via London Evening Standard)external-link

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp also wants to bring Italian £14m-rated Empoli midfielder Riccardo Saponara, 23, to Anfield in January. (Tuttosport, in Italian)external-link

Cristiano Ronaldo's future at Real Madrid is in doubt once again after the 30-year-old forward told Laurent Blanc that he would 'love' to play under him at Paris St-Germain. (Le Parisien, in French)external-link

Tottenham winger Andros Townsend, 24, is ready to demand a transfer in January with Leicester, Swansea, Aston Villa and West Brom interested in the England international. (Sunday Mirror)external-link

Manager Louis van Gaal believes former Manchester United midfielder turned pundit Paul Scholes is partly responsible for United fans chanting "attack, attack, attack" in recent games. (Manchester Evening News)external-link

Chelsea midfielder Willian, 27, is set to be offered a bumper new deal by the club worth more than £100,000 a week in a bid to keep him away from the club's European rivals. (Sun - subscription required)external-link

Former Southampton chairman Nicola Cortese is looking at a takeover of Leeds United. (Times - subscription required)external-link

Inter Milan manager Roberto Mancini is keen to sign Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic, 31, when his contract expires in the summer. (Sunday Mirror)external-link

Kit Symons, 44, is set to be sacked by Fulham in the next 48 hours, becoming the third Championship manager in a week to lose his job. (Telegraph)external-link

Rangers manager Mark Warburton, 53, is flattered to be linked with QPR but insists he is at Ibrox for the long term. (Scotsman)external-link

Best of social media

David De Gea
David De Gea, 25, tweeted his delight at celebrating his birthday with a fifth successive clean sheet
Geoff Cameron
Stoke's American defender Geoff Cameron clearly enjoyed his tussle with Diego Costa on Saturday, tweeting this picture and comment after he had come off the substitutes' bench

And finally

Viitorul boss and ex-Romania captain Gheorghe Hagi, 50, has added to his legendary status in the game by stopping one of his own players from faking injury and wasting time. (Metro)external-link

Manager Arsene Wenger, 66, believes his time at Arsenal could make a Hollywood film. (Sun - subscription required)external-link

New Aston Villa manager Remi Garde, having already banned his foreign players from speaking French, says there will be no more players arriving from France this season. (Telegraph)external-link

Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle has booked himself a front row seat to watch his hometown club Bury in action next weekend when they take on Burton Albion in League One. (Express)external-link

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