Mourinho exit could spark exodus
Chelsea could face a fight to keep hold of several of their best players after the departure of Jose Mourinho.
Reports are rife that many of the club's highest profile players now want to follow him out of Chelsea.
Defender Ricardo Carvalho said: "It is a very sad day for me and the team. I had a big offer from Real Madrid but I stayed at Chelsea because of Mourinho."
And summer signing Florent Malouda added: "I joined Chelsea because of my first meeting with Mourinho."
Several reports claim striker Didier Drogba is "furious and upset" at the parting of the ways between Chelsea and their charismatic Portuguese coach.
AC Milan are admirers of the Ivory Coast striker and would happily finance a move to take him to the San Siro.
Drogba, 29, was Chelsea's top scorer with 33 goals last season.
Reports elsewhere claim Michael Essien and Paulo Ferreira, both brought to Chelsea by Mourinho, may also be mulling over whether to stay at the club.
A huge question mark will also hang over the future of England midfield man Frank Lampard, who has already put talks on a new contract on hold and was regarded as one of Mourinho's most trusted lieutenants in the dressing room.
Lampard has long been linked with a move to Spain with either Real Madrid or Barcelona.