Chelsea rival City for Hughes

Decision 'imminent' from Blues on Grant's successor

Sky Sports News understands members of the Chelsea hierarchy want Mark Hughes as the club's next manager.

The Blackburn Rovers boss is now at the centre of a managerial tug-of-war after Manchester City also made an approach for Hughes.

The former Manchester United striker was given permission by Blackburn on Monday to speak to City regarding the possibility of replacing Sven Goran Eriksson at Eastlands.

But Sky Sports News understands that Hughes is one of two names in the frame to replace Avram Grant in the Stamford Bridge hot seat.

Senior Chelsea figures met outside the country on Monday to discuss the appointment of a new boss, with Hughes and a foreign candidate in contention to succeed Grant.

Chelsea's hunt for their next manager has now 'seriously gathered pace' and a decision is understood to be imminent.

Meanwhile, with Hughes seemingly set to leave Ewood Park, former Bolton Wanderers boss Sam Allardyce has emerged as a contender for the Blackburn job.

Allardyce has cut short a family holiday in Spain to return to the North West, but could also be in the running for the City vacancy, if Hughes goes to Chelsea.

Other candidates for the Blackburn position are ex-England coach Steve McClaren and current Derby County manager Paul Jewell.