3 agendas for Mauricio Pochettino during pre-season for Chelsea

Chelsea (Photo by HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP) (Photo by HENRY NICHOLLS/AFP via Getty Images)
Chelsea (Photo by HENRY NICHOLLS / AFP) (Photo by HENRY NICHOLLS/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Chelsea players left for USA on Monday ahead of their pre-season tour. Mauricio Pochettino will get a chance to look at the players in action and make some key decisions on the their futures and tactics. A host of young players have gone with the squad and it will be a good chance for them to impress the new manager. Here’s a look at 3 agendas for Pochettino during pre-season for Chelsea.

Right combination and lineup

One of the first agendas on Mauricio Pochettino’s mind will be finding the right combination on the field. It is fresh to see Chelsea only taking players who will feature later in the season on the pre-season tour. The club has decided to leave players like Romelu Lukaku and Callum Hudson-Odoi at Cobham as directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley look to find new clubs for them. In the past, CFC pre-season teams have often featured fringe players destined to go out on loan or move to a new club. This was seen as recently as last summer when Thomas Tuchel decided to field the likes of Emerson Palmieri, Ross Barkley and Kenedy, all of whom were sold later.

It will be interesting to see the formation and style of play under Pochettino. The Argentine will look to experiment in pre-season and understand which formations are best suited for this squad. Pochettino has an ideology that consists of aggressive pressing and strict high-intensity training routines. His previous teams have played some fluid football, creating attacking overloads on one flank before quickly switching to the other flank.

Another tactic that he has often used is his teams start with a four-at-the-back formation and switch to a three-at-the-back shape with the ball. This is suitable for Chelsea’s squad as the Blues have Ben Chilwell and Reece James, amongst the best wingbacks in the world. Moreover, the West London Club has strong ball-playing centrebacks like Benoit Badiashille, Wesley Fofana and Levi Colwill. Although, Badiashille and Fofana have not travelled with the squad and we could see Trevoh Chalobah and Levi Colwill featuring in pre-season games. Pochettino will look to deploy these defenders and ask them to pass between the lines to bring a more direct approach to the team’s play.