Julen Lopetegui could be sacked by Real Madrid if results do not improve soon, according to Michael Essien.
Defeats to Sevilla and Deportivo Alaves in LaLiga and a reverse at CSKA Moscow in the Champions League have increased the pressure on the coach, who took charge in sensational circumstances after he was fired by Spain just before the World Cup.
Lopetegui has denied fearing the sack but Essien, who played for Madrid in a loan spell during the 2012-13 season, suggested he could be dispensed with if their form does not improve quickly.
“It’s a big club and if you’re not going to get the results you know what happens next.”
Essien is best remembered for a nine-year spell at Chelsea, who broke the world transfer record for a goalkeeper to sign Kepa Arrizabalaga from Athletic Bilbao for €80million (£72m) in August.
“So far, so good,” Essien said. “Hopefully he will continue like this.”