Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti is to be offered an escape route from Stamford Bridge by Roma, after Claudio Ranieri resigned on Sunday.
Ranieri, himself a former Chelsea boss, quit after Roma conceded a three-goal lead and lost 4-3 to Genoa - their fourth successive defeat.
An approach for Ancelotti, who is under even more pressure after Chelsea went out of the FA Cup on Saturday, will be made by Roma and it is believed he will take it seriously. It is not expected he will survive as Chelsea manager at the end of the season.
Roma plan to appoint a caretaker so they do not disturb Chelsea's preparation for the Champions League last-16 tie in Copenhagen on Tuesday. Roma are also in the Champions League, although they lost the first leg 3-2 at home to Shakhtar Donetsk.
Last night Ranieri said: 'I've always thought about the good of Roma. After the final whistle I went to thank the team and I decided to hand in my resignation.'
Roman Abramovich is understood to have held crisis talks with senior Chelsea officials in response to Saturday's FA Cup loss on penalties to Everton.
The owner appears to agree with his manager's assessment that only two of Chelsea's outfield players - captain John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic - are currently performing to their potential and will remind his highly-paid stars of their responsibilities.
Having already spent more than £75million on Fernando Torres and David Luiz in last month's transfer window, Abramovich is keen to make further investments in his team this summer to put pressure on the established stars.
He also wants to see some of the younger players promoted more regularly to the senior ranks, in particular Josh McEachran and Gael Kakuta, who has been lent to Fulham. Before that, however, the Russian expects to see an improvement when Chelsea meet Copenhagen.
Ancelotti at least has the option of recalling Torres, who was cup-tied against Everton.
Sportsmail understands Abramovich is not sure what to do about Ancelotti. Although the Italian won a domestic Double last season, there is a danger of ending the current campaign without a trophy and out of the Champions League places.
But there is not an obvious alternative to Ancelotti, though there would be three of four candidates. Former manager Guus Hiddink would be one possibility but the Dutchman says he is keen to honour a three-year contract with Turkey that pays him £6.7m a season, net.
Porto coach Andre Villas-Boas, a scout for Chelsea when Jose Mourinho was in charge, would also be a contender, as would Fulham's Mark Hughes, a former player at Stamford Bridge.