PARIS (AFP) - Carlo Ancelotti, who wants to quit Paris Saint-Germain and succeed Jose Mourinho at Real Madrid, found his escape route blocked by the French champions' Qatari owners on Sunday.
Ancelotti has been tipped to replace Mourinho at Real in the summer with the Portuguese expected to return to Chelsea and the Italian coach made clear his desire to go to Spain despite having one more year left on his PSG contract.
"My wish is to leave the club," said the 53-year-old after meeting PSG president Nasser al-Khelaifi. "I have asked to leave. We are going to wait for a response from the club who are going to take a few days to decide."
But al-Khelaifi insisted that Ancelotti, who this season led PSG to a first title since 1994, is going nowhere. "He said that he wanted to leave for Real Madrid. I said it's not possible because he has a contract for another year - that is our decision," al-Khelaifi told www.beinsport.fr.
"It's his problem, not ours. We have even offered him another year on his contract. When you have a contract, you are usually obliged to honour it." Ancelotti confirmed he had met al-Khelaifi and PSG sporting director Leonardo and was expecting a response to his request within a few days.
"We met with the president and with Leo. We'll have to wait a few days.
There are possibilities. Real Madrid is one. But I have a contract here and I am waiting for the club to decide." Leonardo confirmed that Ancelotti had asked to leave.
"What happened was that Carlo has asked to leave for Real Madrid but we want to keep him," he said. "He has another year on his contract. No decision has been made." Former Chelsea and AC Milan coach Ancelotti has spent just 18 months in the French capital.
But rumours that he is set to replace Mourinho at Real when this season finishes had been gathering pace.
Those were only enhanced on Sunday morning when several Spanish newspapers claimed the Portuguese boss would leave before the end of the current campaign.
Madrid sports daily Marca ran the headline "he is going to Chelsea", adding that "Real Madrid could make his goodbye official this week".
Another Spanish newspaper, broadsheet El Mundo, also reported that Mourinho may not even be in charge for Real's final two games of the season against Real Sociedad and Osasuna.
"Madrid want to sack Mourinho now," it claimed.
"The board and the president, Florentino Perez, have had enough after the defeat in the final of the Copa del Rey and the tense situation in the dressing room, and are planning to bring to an end the Portuguese's reign immediately." Ancelotti's first six months at PSG were largely disappointing as he took over a team at the top of Ligue 1, only to see them overhauled by Montpellier to miss out on the title.
However, this season he delivered on the club's twin objectives of winning the league and reaching the Champions League quarter-finals.
He was greatly aided, though, by a huge financial investment from the Qataris that allowed PSG to sign the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Thiago Silva and Ezequiel Lavezzi, as well as bringing in David Beckham on a short-term deal.
Ibrahimovic said he wanted Ancelotti to stay.
"I wouldn't want him to leave. He is a fantastic coach," said the Swede. "I hope he stays, there is a great project here and a fine team. I have scored lots of goals because of him." Ancelotti won two Champions League titles and one Serie A crown with AC Milan while he also completed a league and cup double at Chelsea.
If he does leave, a source close to PSG said that former England boss Fabio Capello, currently in charge of the Russian national team, was the likely successor.