Mauricio Pochettino tells fans ‘blame me’ in response to anger over results

I Take Full Responsibility: Mauricio Pochettino tells fans ‘blame me’ in response to anger over results

Mauricio Pochettino insists Chelsea fans direct boos at him than at his players, who he says deserve only “credit and support.”

Pochettino was subjected to mutinous chants from the away end at Brentford before Axel Disasi earned Chelsea a 2-2 draw on Saturday.

There is widespread anger among fans about the direction the club is heading in, with co-owner Todd Boehly also targeted for criticism while there were also chants in favour of Roman Abramovich and Jose Mourinho at the Gtech Community Stadium.

“I think the performances have been very good, I’m so happy with the performances”, said Pochettino.

Asked whether that is his message to any disgruntled fans, he replied: “Yes, and if they want to listen, perfect. If not, what can I do? They’ll keep booing. I’m giving my best to this team.

“But we cannot blame the fans. My message is: Okay, they need to show their frustration – through who? I prefer to me rather than to the team. I prefer that, I am strong. I am sure that in time we will change the perception.

“I don’t want the fans trying to blame the players. Players need to feel backed by the fans and, to be honest, I prefer that I get the blame and let the players be free on the pitch. I don’t care. I am strong, I am 52 now.

“The players deserve credit and support from our fans. If someone needs to get the blame, that is no problem. That is why I am the coach.”

Pochettino felt Chelsea could have snatched victory late on at Brentford, and believes his side have shown a positive reaction to their Carabao Cup final defeat to Liverpool.

“We should have scored [a winner] with the action that we had with Raheem [Sterling]”, he recalled.

“I think we need to put it in context. Even if sometimes people do not listen, it is our third game in six days, with Leeds and Brentford always having the advantage of a few days more to prepare for the game against us. When you are a little bit short in the squad like we are with some players recovering, it’s always difficult.

“We are going to fight for our place and for our position.”

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