Premier League • England

Pochettino sack: Chelsea manager told time may be up under Boehly as big demand is made by former star

Mauricio Pochettino wants more financial backing from Todd Boehly at Chelsea in the January transfer window

Mauricio Pochettino wants more financial backing from Todd Boehly at Chelsea

Talk that Mauricio Pochettino is facing the sack at Chelsea is beginning to gather serious pace amid claims Blues co-owner Todd Boehly is already getting itchy feet and following talk that only one thing can save the Argentinian from getting the boot now.

Pochettino was appointed by the American over the summer after the club had flitted from manager to manager under their regime so far. While Thomas Tuchel quickly fell on his sword soon after their arrival, Chelsea suffered something of a downturn in results that neither chosen one, Graham Potter, nor his temporary successor, Frank Lampard, could fix.

That ultimately saw the Blues finish a disappointing 12th in the Premier League, a whopping 45 points adrift of champions Manchester City.

With the arrival of Pochettino, who came with a big reputation following stints at Tottenham and PSG, together with another significant transfer spend, hopes were raised that Chelsea could elevate themselves back among the top-four and potentially in the title race again.

However, little has gone right for Pochettino so far this season, with the club dogged by inconsistency and Pochettino failing to get the most out of his expensively-assembled squad.

And with the Blues currently in ninth place, it’s been reported that Pochettino is already on borrowed time with one prominent board member growing tired of the same mistakes repeating themselves.

The Blues are still alive in the Carabao Cup, where they need to overturn a 1-0 deficit against Championship Middlesbrough in the second leg of their semi-finals, and also are through to the fourth round of the FA Cup, where they face Aston Villa.

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Pochettino sack: Chelsea boss told he’s under serious pressure

However, one former Blues star insists it is time for Boehly to start putting pressure on Pochettino to make an instant improvement on their Premier League results.

And John Obi Mikel, who has been known not to mince his words, believes ‘now is the time’ for results to come for Pochettino.

“We’ve given them time now. it’s been half a year. Now it’s time to win. In Chelsea there’s no time. You have to win – that’s our motto,” Obi Mikel told Sky Sports at The Best FIFA Football Awards in London.

“If you don’t win, Roman gets you out of the door and gets someone else. So I think that should be the new owner’s way of thinking – you have to win. If you don’t win, what’s the point of being at Chelsea?

“The excuse of trying to review is done. So now we have to win games, play better, improve and try to compete. This year, knock it on the head now. Next year we need to be up there. We have to keep building the team. Everybody says we’ve spent a lot of money and we have.

“We’ve bought a lot of good players and they need time to improve, and get better as a team. I think Poch is a really good manager. He does really well with young players and with the team. We need a striker, a point-man who scores goals.”

Coach sees progress with his Chelsea side

The Blues were able to claim a 1-0 win over near neighbours Fulham last time out thanks to a Cole Palmer penalty – and while the Blues had to survive a bit of an onslaught from the Cottagers, Pochettino believes the win shows Chelsea are heading in the right direction.

“It’s important for the team and the way we are building in this process. We need to feel confidence, trust, and also accept the criticism after we are beaten by Middlesbrough because we are Chelsea,” Pochettino said.

“That is part of the process, part of our reality. The most important thing is we’re strong and we know the way we need to keep working. The players today were very professional and I was very happy with the first 30 minutes of the second half.

“I think that is the way we need to play with freedom and we linked very well. Then it was good to see this young team defend in the last 15 minutes in the way we did. We were fighting and doing everything to keep the three points.

“I think we played really good football for 30 minutes and should have scored another goal or two to kill the game. We defended well and I think it was good for us to suffer a little bit in the end as I think this type of game helps us grow and builds confidence.”

The Blues return to action next Tuesday when they try and overturn that deficit against Boro, before their cup adventures continue with a quick turnaround against Villa on the Friday night.

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