Very Clear: Mauricio Pochettino sends strong message to Chelsea owners over his future amid sack talk

Mauricio Pochettino has not connected with the Chelsea supporters yet. That much is clear. The man has even admitted it.

So it was a bit unusual not to see the Argentine try and bond with the fans during the squad’s lap of honour at full-time of their 2-1 victory against Bournemouth on the final day of the season. His Blues side had just clinched sixth-place and while that might not seem a big achievement given the club’s rich and long history, with every bit of necessary context added, that is some doing from Pochettino.

The 52-year-old’s side finished the season in breath-taking fashion. Five wins from their last five games made it possible to finish in fifth-place on the last day of the campaign. That did not happen, however, with Tottenham doing the business at Sheffield United as expected.

Chelsea showed remarkable signs of progress in those last five matches – a five-game period that can be viewed as a message to the club’s ownership group. And, as Pochettino is always so keen to point out, you could count it as five-and-a-half games after their second-half fightback away at Aston Villa last month.

The plan is, and always has been, to review Pochettino’s position as head coach at the end of the season. When that crunch meeting will occur is still unknown to the public but when you take a step back and look at what Chelsea did in the 2023/24 season, there is not too much more one can expect given the situation.

Riddled with injuries all season-long, Pochettino was unable to call upon some crucial players throughout the campaign. Pochettino inherited a young, highly inexperienced squad that was assembled together following a few very expensive transfer windows from the ownership group. He had to somehow try and make that team “a team”.

And at times, their lack of maturity has been clear for everyone to see. Just cast your mind back to that Everton game in April. Yes, Chelsea won 6-0 in a dominant performance but the result was massively overshadowed by three players arguing among themselves over who was going to take a penalty.

The Blues head coach, though, handled the situation very well. Some tough words would have been had behind the scenes but he was cautious in his approach when speaking to the media. The situation was seemingly resolved as quickly as it started.

And that performance against Everton set the tone for the rest of Chelsea’s season. Bar that torrid night at Arsenal, who ended up finishing runners-up to Manchester City in the Premier League, the Blues have been virtually flawless.

Sacking Pochettino and going back to the start once again would be ludicrous. The club’s sporting directors and owners, when the infamous meeting does happen, need to tell Pochettino that they still believe he is the right man to lead Chelsea forward. The fact he remains so in the dark about what will happen is not good at all. You believe Pochettino when he tells the media he does not know what the club’s plans are.

The players are fully behind him. They of course say that in the media, as you expect, but you can tell by the way they are performing, especially in those last five matches, that they have bought into his philosophy, his ideology and Pochettino himself.

Coming into Chelsea, Pochettino was well renowned for his man-management expertise in particular and that has really benefitted the club this season. While Cole Palmer deserves all the praise in the world for what was a genuinely mouth-watering debut season at Stamford Bridge, we cannot overlook the Argentine’s role in his transformation.

Signing for the Blues from Manchester City, in a bid to play more first-team football, Palmer has been allowed to fully express himself at Chelsea. The Blues, and Pochettino in particular, have essentially built the rest of the team around the England international and given him the perfect platform to produce incredible numbers.

For a group of young players, that will be even more inexperienced now Thiago Silva has played his final game for the club, there are not many with the capabilities Pochettino has. He has not been perfect and this is not an article saying he has been (although there has been a lot of praise) but sacking him now would be nothing short of insanity.

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