Andre Villas-Boas needs more time at Chelsea to show what he can do as a manager, according to Porto chairman Nuno Pinto da Costa, but he did hint that the 33 year old could make the move to Inter Milan if the Blues do lose patience and decide to make yet another managerial sacking.
Villas-Boas has been under the microscope of late, as the club continue to boast disappointing results. Chelsea's 2-0 loss to Everton at the weekend was the turning point, and the side confirmed that Roman Abramovich had words with the manager after the match.
And now, in an interview with Gazzetta Dello Sport, Pinto da Costa has claimed that Villas-Boas could well be considering his future post Chelsea already.
"If he were to leave Chelsea, I am sure he will become the next coach at Inter," da Costa said. "He has the right personality to coach the Nerazzurri.
"In the past, I said the same thing about [Jose] Mourinho. However, in my opinion Villas-Boas made a mistake to leave Porto so soon.
"He thought that this was a unique opportunity, but he would surely get other offers like that."
Porto were loath to let go of their star manager, who took the side to Europa League victory in his first season with the club, but Chelsea were able to make an offer he couldn't refuse after sacking Carlo Ancelotti.
But while Ancelotti lasted just two seasons at Chelsea, and numerous managers even less before him under Abramovich's reign, Da Costa believes that Villas-Boas needs time to show the club that he was worth the gamble.
And in making his argument, the chairman revealed that many of the Chelsea players are still in touch with former manager Jose Mourinho, who left the club in 2007 after a reported falling out with Abramovich.
"I think that Villas-Boas is doing well at Chelsea," he explained.
"He only needs time to fine-tune the squad, but this is impossible when there are players exchanging text messages with Mourinho.
"The only thing that could make him leave Chelsea will be the team's failure to qualify for the Champions League."
Chelsea will now be looking to make up for their weekend loss with a win over Birmingham on Saturday. If the side were to lose once more, pressure would no doubt mount even further on Villas-Boas, with the west London club already out of the top four after a string of disappointing results.