Pochettino Confirmed as Chelsea Boss
Mauricio Pochettino has been confirmed as the new Chelsea manager. The former Tottenham Hotspur and Paris St-Germain boss officially starts work at Stamford Bridge on July 1. Pochettino, 51, has signed a two-year contract with the Blues, with an option of a further year. He will be tasked with getting Chelsea back into the European places and back into contention for trophies after a disappointing campaign. He will be required to trim down a bloated squad and will need to find a way to get the best out of some talented and expensive signings who have yet to settle at the club.
Mid-Table Finish for Big Spending Chelsea
Chelsea’s 12th place finish in the Premier League was their lowest for over a quarter of a century. They exited both domestic cup competitions at the third round stage, however, faired slightly better in Europe where they reached the quarter-finals of the Champions League where they lost to Real Madrid.
After parting company with Thomas Tuchel in September they appointed Graham Potter who was sacked in April. Frank Lampard then returned as interim boss. Pochettino becomes the club’s sixth permanent manager in five years. He will be the fourth manager to work under Todd Boehly since the American took control in July last year. Since then a raft of expensive signings have arrived at the club but they have failed to gel as a team. Since Boehly took the reins, the Pensioners have spent in excess of £550m on players with their Premier League record of £288m in January totaling more than all the clubs in the Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1 put together.
Chelsea Welcome “a World-Class Coach”
A club statement welcoming Pochettino said:
“Mauricio is a world-class coach with an outstanding track record. We are all looking forward to having him on board,”
The Argentine will work with sporting directors Paul Winstanley and Lawrence Stewart. In a statement they said:
“Mauricio’s experience, standards of excellence, leadership qualities and character will serve Chelsea Football Club well as we move forward. He is a winning coach, who has worked at the highest levels, in multiple leagues and languages. His ethos, tactical approach and commitment to development all made him the exceptional candidate.”
Spurs Return Rumoured but Chelsea Appoint Pochettino
Pochettino had been heavily linked with a return to former club Tottenham after they parted company with Antonio Conte in March, however, instead he has joined Spurs’ London rivals Chelsea.
The former Argentina International started his managerial career with Espanyol before moving to Southampton. He then managed Tottenham from 2014 to 2019. During his time with the club they were runners up in the League Cup, the Premier League and the Champions League.
He then took over from future Blues boss Tuchel at PSG in January 2021, where he earned the first trophies of his managerial career, the Coupe de France and the Trophee des Champions. However, he had to settle for second place in the league.
Pochettino Will Need Control and Time
Pochettino will need control over transfers. Chelsea are crying out for a striker, and he will clearly have targets in mind. He will also have the task of shipping out players he feels do not fit his blueprint for the future.
Players can expect to be pushed hard in training, Pochettino is a coach who demands high levels of fitness from his players.
He will need time to implement his ideas and being afforded this will be more valuable than bringing in more hugely expensive signings. However, time is a commodity which is becoming more and more rare in football in general and Chelsea in particular. The Premier League now has several clubs who will feel that they can challenge for the top four and for trophies and after a season where they lost a lot of ground, Chelsea will have to strive to get back into the elite during 2023/24.
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