Chelsea's Managerial Dilemma: Pros And Cons Of Sacking Pochettino

After Chelsea’s sixth consecutive defeat in a Domestic Cup Final, speculation over Mauricio Pochettino’s future as Blues manager has intensified.
Manchester City v Chelsea FC - Premier League
Manchester City v Chelsea FC - Premier League / Visionhaus/GettyImages
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Mauricio Pochettino
Chelsea v Liverpool - Carabao Cup Final / Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/GettyImages

Pros of Sacking Pochettino

1. Poor In-Game Management:

Some of Pochettino’s substitutions and in-game tactical tweaks have often left fans confused. This was once again evident in the Carabao Cup Fiinal loss to Liverpool, where the substitutes failed to make any real impact on the game. Despite being the more dominant side in the second half, the players collectively took their foot off the gas in extra time, with the Chelsea manager admitting that the team felt it would be better to play for penalties.

Chelsea made only four out of a possible six substitutes over the 120 minutes. While Klopp injected energy and fresh legs into his team by trusting his Academy players, Pochettino clearly did not feel confident enough to trust Chelsea’s youth. Overall, the majority of his substitutions this season have been reactive rather than proactive, often failing to positively influence the game. While the Blues' manager cannot be blamed for the players missing chances or sustaining injuries, this is an aspect of his management for which he must accept full responsibility.

2. Lack of Player Improvement:

For a manager who was previously praised for his ability to improve and develop young players during his time at Spurs, Pochettino has yet to demonstrate this skill at Stamford Bridge. Mykhailo Mudryk, for example, still appears to lack any sort of tactical awareness on the field and his game on the ball is filled with inconsistencies and indecision. Enzo Fernandez looks like a shadow of the player Chelsea signed last season, partially due to Pochettino’s poor profiling. Moises Caicedo is yet to replicate the form he showed at Brighton which inspired Chelsea to make him the club’s most expensive signing in history. Raheem Sterling looks like a shadow of himself despite being Chelsea’s highest earner.

Although Cole Palmer has certainly improved, his progress is primarily due to getting regular minutes to showcase the talent he always possessed at Manchester City, rather than Pochettino's influence. Arguably the only player to have improved from playing under Poch is Conor Gallagher, whose performances this season have most definitely warranted a contract renewal at Chelsea. When assessing Chelsea’s squad individually, you could count on one hand the number of players who have improved this season under the new manager.