Pochettino sees bright future for Chelsea amid European push

Mauricio Pochettino
Mauricio Pochettino / OLI SCARFF/GettyImages

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino is optimistic about the club's future, eyeing European qualification as a significant achievement after a challenging first season at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues have shown remarkable improvement, winning their last three Premier League games and climbing to seventh in the table, positioning themselves well for a return to European competition next season.

Chelsea's recent form has been impressive, with the team now level on points with sixth-placed Newcastle and three points ahead of Manchester United. Their superior goal difference over the Red Devils further bolsters their chances of securing a top-six finish, which would guarantee a spot in either the Europa League or the Conference League. Even a seventh-place finish could suffice, provided Manchester United do not win the FA Cup against Manchester City later this month.

Overcoming early challanges

Pochettino's tenure began with a rocky start, as the team managed only three wins in their first ten league games. Injuries and the integration of inexperienced players posed significant challenges. However, the Argentine manager has overseen a dramatic turnaround, with Chelsea losing just once in their last 13 top-flight matches.

The manager emphasised the importance of belief and consistency, noting that the team has been performing admirably in recent months. He highlighted the significance of competing in Europe, describing it as an amazing opportunity for the club.

Pochettino's future at Chelsea had been uncertain until recent weeks, but convincing victories over Tottenham, West Ham, and a comeback win against Nottingham Forest have solidified his position.

Reflecting on the season, Pochettino acknowledged that the team's poor start had been a significant setback. He pointed out that if the season's performance were measured from the 11th game onward, Chelsea would be in the top four. This perspective underscores the progress made under his leadership despite early challenges.

Key players returning from injury

Reece James
Reece James / Copa/GettyImages

The return of key players from injury has provided a timely boost for Chelsea. Captain Reece James and forward Christopher Nkunku have both made recent comebacks, although Pochettino does not expect them to start in the upcoming match against Brighton.

The manager explained that players returning from injury need time to regain full fitness, and the team must rely on those who can cope with the demands of a full 90 minutes.

In a unique twist, Pochettino quoted Coldplay during a press conference, likening Chelsea's season to the band's song "Fix You." He admitted to being a fan of the band and urged journalists to listen to the track, emphasising the need to move forward and focus on the future.

Planning for the future

Despite the uncertainty surrounding his position, Pochettino is already planning for next season. He expressed his desire to stay and build a strong emotional bond with the supporters.

The manager emphasised that planning and working towards the future are ongoing processes, and he remains committed to translating his positive outlook to the team and fans.

Chelsea's improvement in recent months has been significant. After a slow start, the team has gathered 35 points from their last 18 matches, putting them in contention for a European place. With key players returning from injury and a full squad nearly available, Pochettino is hopeful for a competitive and successful next season.

The manager reiterated that the team's early struggles had been a major hurdle, but he is determined to stop talking about a young squad and injuries. He expressed his hope that next season will see all players fit and competitive, fighting for a place in the starting XI.

As Chelsea prepares for their final two games against Brighton and Bournemouth, the club's supporters will be hoping that Pochettino's vision and belief can guide them back to European football and set the stage for a successful future.