Roberto di Matteo's future at Chelsea is in jeopardy after the Blues were trounced 3-0 by Juventus on Tuesday night, leaving them on the brink of elimination from the Champions League at the group stage.

Chelsea must beat Nordsjaelland in their final match and hope Shakhtar Donetsk, who have already qualified for the knockout stage, defeat Juventus in a fortnight's time. Should Di Matteo's side go out they would be the first defending champions to do so at the first round of entry since Steaua Bucharest in 1986-87.

Di Matteo dropped Fernando Torres and deployed Eden Hazard as the in-vogue false nine in a bid to shore up the Blues' porous defence but Juve exposed those frailties with predictable ease as Fabio Quagliarella, Arturo Vidal and Sebastian Giovinco each scored for a comprehensive victory.

Torres, who has only scored 19 goals for the club since his £50m arrival in January 2011, replaced John Obi Mikel with 20 minutes to go but is in danger of resembling an orange in The Godfather.

chelsea

Eden Hazard and Juan Mata contemplate the predicament

The presence of the fruit throughout the trilogy indicates a death-related event will soon occur and after Carlo Ancelotti fell victim last year Di Matteo could be the second. That he dropped the misfiring Spaniard was neither a surprise nor unwise, however Chelsea's back-up striker who isn't a false nine is Daniel Sturridge, who is being heavily linked with a January transfer move to Liverpool. Nineteen-year-old Romelu Lukaku meanwhile was allowed to move to West Brom on loan.

Chelsea spent £79.5m in the summer on Hazard, Oscar and Marko Marin as Roman Abramovich pursued his dream of seeing his adopted club conquer Europe by playing vibrant football. 19 May 2012 may be remembered as the greatest night in the club's history but their display against Bayern Munich was a negative one.

What Abramovich ignored when he sanctioned the tens of millions to be spent on exciting attackers was that Chelsea's defence was in need of addressing as well. César Azpilicueta was brought in to solve the squad's problem position at right-back but John Terry aside Di Matteo does not boast a quality central defender with continental pedigree. David Luíz continues to toil with or without Terry while doubts remain over Gary Cahill's reliability at the highest level. The irony is his signing - a defensive one - came via the club's hierarchy in January as he soon found himself unwanted and unloved by André Villas-Boas.

Loading Slideshow...
  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Giorgio Chiellini of Juventus FC during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Andrea Pirlo of Juventus FC gestures during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Leonardo Bonucci of Juventus FC #19 and David Luiz of Chelsea FC compete for the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Juventus FC players celebrate victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Paul Pogba of Juventus FC in action during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Sebastian Giovinco of Juventus FC (2nd R) os congratulated by team-mates after scoring their team's third goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Andrea Pirlo of Juventus holds the ball from Oscar and Eden Hazard of Chelsea during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea at the Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Juventus FC players celebrate victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Juventus FC players celebrate victory at the end of the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Referee Cuneyt Cakir issues Sebastian Giovinco of Juventus FC with a yellow card for removing his shirt whilst celebrating during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Andrea Pirlo of Juventus FC looks on during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Sebastian Giovinco #12 of Juventus FC celebrates with team-mate Arturo Vidal after scoring their team's third goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Sebastian Giovinco of Juventus FC #12 scores the third goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus supporters wave flags before the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus supporters wave flags before the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Chelsea Italian manager Roberto Di Matteo looks on during the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE (Photo credit should read GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Players of Juventus FC celebrate during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Fabio Quagliarella of Juventus FC (L) celebrates scoring the first goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' forward Fabio Quaglierella celebrates after scoring during the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE (Photo credit should read GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Oscar of Chelsea is challenged by Arturo Vidal of Juventus during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea at the Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon (down) fights for the ball with Chelsea's Spanish striker Juan Mata during the football Champions League match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Arturo Vidal of Juventus FC celebrates scoring the second goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' forward Fabio Quaglierella (R) fights for the ball with Chelsea's English defender Gary Cahill during the football Champions League match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Giorgio Chiellini of Juventus FC (L) and Juan Mata of Chelsea FC (R) compete for the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Gary Cahill and Oscar of Chelsea react after Juventus score their second goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea at the Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' midfielder of Ghana Kwadwo Asamoah (R) fights for the ball with Chelsea's Spanish defender Cesar Azpilicueta during the football Champions League match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    French former player Zinedine Zidane attends the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / GIUSEPPE CACACE (Photo credit should read GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon (L) makes a save front of Chelsea's Belgian midfielder Eden Hazard (2nd R) during the football Champions League match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon (L) fights for the ball with Chelsea's Belgian midfielder Eden Hazard (2nd R) during the football Champions League match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' forward Fabio Quaglierella celebrates after scoring during the Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Juventus v Chelsea FC - UEFA Champions League

    TURIN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 20: Fabio Quagliarella of Juventus FC (R) celebrates scoring the first goal during the UEFA Champions League Group E match between Juventus and Chelsea FC at Juventus Arena on November 20, 2012 in Turin, Italy. (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)

  • FBL-EUR-C1-JUVENTUS-CHELSEA

    Juventus' forward Fabio Quaglierella (L) celebrates after scoring during the football Champions League football match between Juventus and Chelsea on November 20, 2012 in the stadium of Alps in Turin. AFP PHOTO / OLIVIER MORIN (Photo credit should read OLIVIER MORIN/AFP/Getty Images)

Luíz and Cahill are also poorly protected by the nondescript John Obi Mikel, left to screen the defence by himself as the marauding Ramires offers a more attacking threat despite his box-to-box prowess. Di Matteo cannot be held solely responsible for such a disjointed XI but his two-year contract smacked of a stop-gap appointment. Only at Chelsea could a manager win the FA Cup and Champions League yet be in such an insecure position and the ludicrousness of the scenario is exacerbated by who could be caretaker should he be sacked.

Avram Grant, who has not managed since he oversaw West Ham United's relegation in 2011, and Rafael Benítez, discharged by Internazionale in December 2010 and without a job since, are the two candidates. Grant of course took Chelsea to two finals in 2008 and was the width of a post away from winning the European Cup with the club four years before Di Matteo, only that masked his obvious shortcomings as a manager which were exposed at Upton Park. Benítez's affinity with Liverpool meanwhile will make him an unpopular appointment amongst Chelsea supporters, notwithstanding his poor record in Premier League football.

Quick Poll

Who should Chelsea get rid of? Di Matteo or Torres?

VOTE

Four weeks ago Chelsea were top of the Premier League and unbeaten only for Manchester United to end their superb start. Two hours later the Mark Clattenburg allegations were reported. A verdict on the Clattenburg row is expected this week and Manchester City arrive at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. The oranges might be piling up for Di Matteo.