Report: Rodgers, Di Matteo, Hiddink on Chelsea shortlist

Chelsea are likely to appoint Brendan Rodgers, Roberto Di Matteo or Guus Hiddink as interim manager if they sack Jose Mourinho, according to reports.

Chelsea lost for the seventh time in 12 Premier League games on Saturday at Stoke City and are 16th going into a two-week international break.

The Blues' latest defeat has increased speculation that Roman Abramovich will feel no choice but to sack Mourinho now and appoint a manager until the end of the season when the likes of Pep Guardiola may be available.

According to both the Sunday People and Sunday Express, Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone could also be a contender for the permanent job at Stamford Bridge

The Argentine is apparently ready to quit his post at the Vicente Calderon Stadium in the summer and has already been 'sounded out' about the possibility of taking over at Chelsea, according to the Express.

Before then, there is said to be a shortlist of only three names -- Rodgers, Di Matteo and Hiddink -- to replace Mourinho, with Carlo Ancelotti apparently not willing to take over on a short-term basis.

Rodgers was only sacked by Liverpool last month and may want a longer break before returning to management, while it is unclear whether Di Matteo would want to return to a club that sacked him despite winning the Champions League.

Hiddink, however, has already enjoyed one spell as interim manager in Chelsea, in 2009 when he led the club to the FA Cup.