The Foreign Secretary is keen to have D-J Collins, European communications director at Google, as his director of communications should be become PM. It is not known whether Collins has agreed to the plan. Miliband would also find a place in the team for Jonathan Kestenbaum, the well-connected chief executive of Nesta (National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts). Kestenbaum is said to have told friends he would take chief of staff.
Miliband is also believed to have a campaign manager in place. Alan Donnelly, chairman of the lobbying firm Sovereign Strategy, has been asked to perform the role. The three men are part of a six-strong inner circle already providing discreet help to Miliband in a personal capacity. Other members of the inner circle are former Downing Street head of policy Matthew Taylor and Miliband's current top special advisers Sarah Schaefer and Madlin Sadler.
There's not much going on in political news at the moment so expect the Westminster lobby to be on to this like a rat at a trap. Miliband and his spokespeople will of course indulge in plausible denial, and it may well be that discussions haven't gone quite as far as this. But even if Miliband himself has not been present at any meetings, I would be very surprised this band of helpers hadn't met to discuss a few 'what if' scenarios at the very least. That's what happens in advance of leadership campaigns. But one of them has committed a cardinal sin. They have leaked.