Mauricio Pochettino Leaves Chelsea: A Sad End To A High-Potential Partnership

Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea Have Salvaged 11 Points From A Position Of Deficit In The Premier League This Season
Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea Have Salvaged 11 Points From A Position Of Deficit In The Premier League This Season

On Tuesday (May 21), Real Madrid legend Toni Kroos announced his decision to retire after the 2024 European Championship. The news sent shockwaves around the world, drawing emotional messages from some of the most prominent names in soccer. Hours later, Chelsea dropped a bombshell, confirming that Mauricio Pochettino would leave the club by mutual consent. Kroos’ announcement came after a brilliant 10-year journey at Real Madrid — it came from a place of fulfillment. Pochettino’s Chelsea exit, meanwhile, was a story of disappointment — it was a premature end to a potentially era-defining marriage.

Mauricio Pochettino Was Delivering Results At Chelsea

After finishing 12th in the 2022-23 Premier League rankings, Chelsea turned to former Tottenham Hotspur and Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) manager Pochettino for inspiration. Known for his exceptional work with young players, Pochettino seemed like the perfect man to take the reins at Stamford Bridge. However, even a man of Pochettino’s talents could not turn the Pensioners into a winning machine overnight.

The Blues started the season with a 1-1 draw with Liverpool before suffering 3-1 humbling at West Ham United. They did bounce back with a win against Luton Town, but the good feeling did not last long. In the following three games, Chelsea lost to Nottingham Forest and Aston Villa and played out a goalless draw with Bournemouth in between. The topsy-turvy ride extended until the end of 2023, with Chelsea turning over a new leaf in the second half of the season.

Of the 18 Premier League games they played in 2024, Pochettino’s men only lost three times (vs Liverpool, Wolverhampton Wanderers, and Arsenal), won 10 games, and played out five draws. In fact, Chelsea ended the 2023-24 Premier League campaign with a nine-game unbeaten streak. Only Manchester City and Arsenal amassed more points than the Blues in that period.

During Chelsea’s encouraging run, Pochettino said his boys were finally playing how he wanted them to. After guiding them to a sixth-placed finish, Pochettino reassured fans that good things were in store for next season.

Chelsea Board Wants Instant Success

Pochettino missed out on silverware, frustratingly losing to Liverpool in the Carabao Cup final. But most would say that his Chelsea were heading in the right direction. Sadly for the manager, prominent members of the board did not show enough faith in the Argentine in the end-of-season meeting.

According to BBC, one of the controlling co-owners Todd Boehly was open to giving Pochettino the time he was demanding, but co-controlling owner Behdad Eghbali did not agree. Eghbali, along with two sporting directors — Winstanley and Stewart — and Clearlake Capital co-founder Jose Feliciano, were reportedly in favor of a change of personnel. Ultimately, their wishes reigned supreme, and the Blues chose to part ways with their manager for the fifth time in six years.

Ipswich Town manager Kieran McKenna, Sporting CP’s Ruben Amorim, and Burnley’s Vincent Kompany are reportedly on Chelsea’s managerial shortlist. They want someone young and dynamic, but most importantly, they want a coach who can make the west London outfit fight on all fronts right out the gate.

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