PSG considering Laudrup - reports
Laudrup denies exit reports
Paris Saint-Germain have made an initial approach to Michael Laudrup about taking over from Carlo Ancelotti, whose departure from the Parc des Princes is imminent.
Strengthening reports from their British counterparts, L'Equipe claimed on Thursday that Laudrup, who will turn 49 on Saturday, has held preliminary talks with PSG about becoming coach in the French capital where a one-year contract with the option of a further year awaits.
On Wednesday, Sky Italia reported PSG were eyeing a surprise move to lure Andre Villas-Boas from Tottenham, although it appears they have turned their attention to Danish coach Laudrup.
The Swansea manager, who extended his contract in south Wales to 2015 only in March, has seen a row between his agent and the Premier League side spill over into the public domain, and Laudrup is reportedly unhappy the club's board have made little headway in pursuing the players the Dane hopes to add to his squad this summer.
Laudrup, though, has yet to meet PSG president Nasser Al Khelaifi, who reportedly still hopes to promote sporting director Leonardo to the position for a season before appointing Arsene Wenger when the Frenchman's contract at Arsenal expires at the end of the 2013-14 campaign.
However, Leonardo has to wait until June 20 before he hears the outcome of his appeal against a nine-month ban from all official matchday duties, which would severely restrict his ability to coach the Ligue 1 champions.
Having initially threatened to force Ancelotti, 54, to see out the remaining year of his contract, Al Khelaifi is now resigned to losing the Italian, reported Le Parisien on Thursday, with confirmation of the former Chelsea boss' departure "now only a matter of hours" away according to the French capital's daily.
The paper claimed sources close to Ancelotti, who asked to be allowed to leave PSG on May 19, a week after securing the Ligue 1 title, confirmed an agreement between the two parties was merely waiting to be signed.
"The agreement between giants has finally arrived," Le Parisien quotes "a connoisseur of the matter" as saying. "The outcome of this story was already known by everyone. All that was left was to find a solution which left no-one humiliated."
Though Laudrup now appears favourite to succeed Ancelotti, PSG are keeping the door open for Guus Hiddink, 66. The Anzhi Makhachkala boss reportedly signed a one-year extension to his contract with the Russian Premier League club earlier this week, but Hiddink's agent is quoted in Thursday's Le Parisien as saying: "Guus has given his word, but nothing's been signed."
Anzhi sporting director, Herman Tkachenko, confirmed PSG had been in touch with regards the Dutchman's availability, but was confident Hiddink would remain with the Dagestani club. "Yes, I got a call from PSG," he told live sport. "But why talk about it now? Hiddink has signed for another year with us and is perhaps going to stay even longer, which we're delighted about."