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Page last updated at 10:03 GMT, Thursday, 18 June 2009 11:03 UK

Wilkins cool over Maldini rumours

Former AC Milan coach and Paolo Maldini with the Champions League trophy in 2007
Maldini (right) had been rumoured to be following Ancelotti (left) to Chelsea

Chelsea assistant coach Ray Wilkins has cast doubt on the likelihood of AC Milan legend Paolo Maldini joining the backroom staff at Stamford Bridge.

Maldini has just retired after 25 years with Milan, where he played under new Blues coach Carlo Ancelotti.

"I know him well and had the pleasure of playing with him, but I don't know if he'll come," Wilkins told 5 Live.

"He's a very good friend of Carlo but I think it's too soon after his playing career - he wants a rest."

Maldini, who speaks good English, retired at the end of the 2008-09 season after a glittering career in which he won seven Serie A titles and five Champions League trophies.

The 40-year-old made more than 900 appearances for Milan and won a record 126 caps for Italy, but is thought to be unhappy with the lack of opportunities at the San Siro since his retirement.

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Ancelotti has agreed to work with current Chelsea coach Wilkins, who speaks Italian, but he is also thought to want to bring in a fellow countryman.

And with Chelsea still looking to replace defensive coach specialist Steve Clarke, who joined Gianfranco Zola at West Ham earlier this year, Maldini could have fitted the bill.

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see also
Drogba given lengthy European ban
18 Jun 09 |  Chelsea
Saturday's gossip column
13 Jun 09 |  Gossip
Paolo Maldini's career in photos
31 May 09 |  Football
Maldini to play for one more year
06 Jun 08 |  Europe

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