Why Pochettino must not be sacked mid-season – Talk Chelsea

For the first time this season I am also frustrated with Mauricio Pochettino to the point where it’s had me wondering if he can be the manager to bring Chelsea back to the top.

But sacking him is not the answer, and it would actually be regressive.

Pochettino was hired because of his experience working with and developing young players. I always said that there wasn’t many better choices out there than Pochettino in terms of getting the best out of the squad we have got, and I think many people felt the same.

If you look at the stats, Pochettino HAS actually improved our play. But unfortunately, I am a person who prefers to look at the eye test alongside the data, as well as more important solid facts, the league table. And none of that is positive right now. I’ve written more about Pochettino’s coaching negativities in my other article today on my Substack site ‘Si Phillips Talks Chelsea ‘where I go on a bit of a rant – I wanted this one to be a little more measure.

Because seriously, I do not want to go on another manager merry-go-round, that isn’t the answer in my opinion. And I’ll now explain why:

The players love Poch

I’ve heard from people at Cobham just how much the players, in general, love Mauricio Pochettino. This is not PR, this is genuinely just people who shouldn’t really be talking but are nice enough to let me know some things from time to time.

He has carefully built relationships with each and every player, and the young players really enjoy working with him and really trust him – at least as a person and as a leader. Some of the players credit their improvements (rare but there has been some) on Pochettino alone.

They would have to create new relations

If Poch was sacked then you would have a large handful of players upset and morale would drop drastically (because believe it or not it actually has been very good in the group). Then when the new manager came in they would have to take time creating a relationship with them and earning their trust again.

We would be going back to pre-season again

It would pen us back. During mid-season, it would take us back to the start of the season. A manager would have to take time gelling with his squad, getting his ideas and tactics across to them, learning how they operate and what they are like. And all of that would take time and could be disastrous. We aren’t in a position where we need a new manager bounce, because the players have not turned on Pochettino, far from it. If they had then I might have different feelings. We would be majorly regressing if we sacked Poch right now and that could end up being disastrous for the rest of the season.

Exactly who is available instead?

Genuinely, who are you bringing in now, during mid-season? Answers in comments if you have a good one. I see calls for Jose Mourinho, but please….

Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Who would want to come here now?

If we sacked another manager, which would be the 45th (slight exaggeration) manager since our new owners came in, who on earth would want to take this job now? It could literally RUIN their career. What a great message it would be sending to another suitor if we sacked Poch now. ‘Come join our project for the long-term that may or may not be for the long-term depending on how your first 15 games go.’

Sacking him is once again admitting ownership mistakes

Our owners are already under scrutiny and have made some big mistakes. Imagine they sack Pochettino now, it would be admitting to one more big mistake to add to the list – it’s not a good look.

We need stability

Stability is so important in my opinion, especially with a young and immature team who are allegedly in a project. Changing things up will be very unsettling for this group. Changing the manager would not suddenly give us a more mature and less raw squad, would it? Stability and time does that.

There HAS been improvements

As I said above, the stats do show that performance-wise there HAS been improvements under Pochettino. And even though I hate excuses and do look at the bigger picture as well, you cannot ignore the mass injuries and unprecedented situations we have faced as well. I’m not defending anyone, but it would be unfair and reactionary to ignore all of that.

Our direction would keep changing

What direction would we then go in? Well, that would depend on the kind of person and manager they would bring in. If it was someone who came in and demanded more control, would we then have to rebuild the squad again? Would we then move to a more win titles now approach and continue to go around in circles? Changing the manager changes the direction, yet again.

I could go on too….

It’s easy to call ‘sack the manager’ when we are in the position we are in, but sometimes there is far more to it than just that. People demand answers and a response in situations like this, which I totally understand, but sometimes the managers head is just not the solution.

I get it, Pochettino has been FAR from perfect, and yes, I too am a little concerned. But as above, we simply cannot sack him right now and we need to maintain our plan of reviewing it at the end of the season.

And I believe that is also what they will do.

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