Just in: Chelsea made Mauricio Pochettino their new head coach

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Mauricio Pochettino (Photo credit:chelseafc.com)


Chelsea has officially announced the appointment of Mauricio Pochettino, the former manager of Tottenham Hotspur and Paris Saint-Germain, as their new head coach. 

Mauricio Pochettino, the 51-year-old Argentine, is set to commence his new position as Chelsea’s manager on 1st July 2023. He has signed a two-year contract, with the possibility of extending it for an additional year. This appointment follows Frank Lampard’s interim tenure, during which Chelsea finished 12th in the Premier League, marking their lowest ranking in over 25 years.

“Mauricio is a world-class coach with an outstanding track record. We are all looking forward to having him on board,” they said.

According to Chelsea, Mauricio Pochettino was their top choice and the sole manager they engaged in discussions with during the hiring process. Pochettino will collaborate with the club’s sporting directors, Paul Winstanley and Lawrence Stewart, in his new role.

“Mauricio’s experience, standards of excellence, leadership qualities, and character will serve Chelsea Football Club well as we move forward,” Winstanley and Stewart said in a statement.

“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.”

Following the dismissals of Thomas Tuchel and Graham Potter earlier in the season, Mauricio Pochettino becomes Chelsea’s sixth permanent manager in just five years. This change came after Frank Lampard took temporary charge of the team. Pochettino is also the fourth manager to work under owner Todd Boehly, who assumed control of the club in July of the previous year.

Under Boehly’s ownership, Chelsea’s spending on player acquisitions has surpassed £550m, with a Premier League record of £288m in January alone, surpassing the combined total spent by all Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A, and Ligue 1 clubs. Despite notable signings such as World Cup winner Enzo Fernandez and Ukrainian winger Mykhailo Mudryk, Chelsea had a disappointing season and was eliminated by Real Madrid in the Champions League quarter-finals. They also suffered early exits from both the FA Cup and Carabao Cup in the third round.

From a rival in London to a new head coach

After parting ways with Antonio Conte in March, Tottenham Hotspur was initially linked with a potential return for Mauricio Pochettino. However, the Argentine manager has now joined their London rivals, Chelsea.

Pochettino began his managerial journey with Espanyol before a successful 16-month stint at Southampton. He then took the helm at Tottenham from 2014 to 2019. During his tenure, he guided Spurs to the League Cup final in 2015 and a runner-up position in the Premier League in the 2016-17 season, narrowly missing out on both titles to Chelsea. Pochettino also led the team to the memorable 2019 Champions League final.

One notable match under his management was an infamous London derby in May 2016, where Tottenham received nine yellow cards compared to Chelsea’s three, effectively ending their title hopes for that season.

Following his time at Tottenham, Pochettino took over from Thomas Tuchel at Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in January 2021. In his first season with the French club, PSG finished second in Ligue 1 but managed to secure the Coupe de France and the Trophee des Champions, marking Pochettino’s first managerial trophies.

He should be in charge of Chelsea’s agenda


Pochettino’s decision to join Chelsea has not been made lightly, as he turned down several potential suitors since leaving Paris Saint-Germain in July 2022. However, Chelsea stood out among the options presented to him, and he initially declined Todd Boehly’s offer until he was granted more control over the team.

A crucial factor in Pochettino’s success at Chelsea will depend on his ability to strengthen the squad, particularly in finding a quality striker. Romelu Lukaku could be a potential option if he can stay clear of injuries, but Pochettino must first make room by offloading certain players before considering new additions.

Reflecting on his time at PSG, Pochettino has realized the importance of returning to his core coaching principles—passion, intensity, and building strong relationships with his players, akin to his successful tenure at Tottenham Hotspur. He has taken a critical self-assessment, acknowledging his past mistakes and identifying areas where he can improve to avoid similar pitfalls at Chelsea.

One of his primary goals is to have the energy and influence to mold the players effectively, ensuring they listen to him and follow his instructions. Pochettino understands that at Chelsea, he needs to have a greater degree of control over the team’s agenda, something he couldn’t fully achieve at PSG.

Above all, Pochettino recognizes that a quick fix is not the solution and that time is the most valuable resource, surpassing vast sums of money. Communicating this message to the club and its supporters will be crucial in managing expectations and building a foundation for sustained success at Chelsea.

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