Home Sport Chelsea’s future ‘out of my hands’ admits Pochettino

Chelsea’s future ‘out of my hands’ admits Pochettino

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The under-pressure Argentine, Mauricio Pochettino, said he had had constructive conversations with Chelsea co-owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali following Sunday’s 1-0 extra-time defeat at Wembley.

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino reacts during the Carabao Cup final against Liverpool played at Wembley Stadium, London, Britain on February 25, 2024. Picture: REUTERS, Carl Recine

Mauricio Pochettino believes he still has the backing of Chelsea’s owners after defeat by Liverpool in the League Cup final but accepts his future at Stamford Bridge is “out of my hands”.

The under-pressure Argentine said he had had constructive conversations with Chelsea co-owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali following Sunday’s 1-0 extra-time defeat at Wembley.

The loss led to renewed criticism of Pochettino and his expensively assembled squad, with former Manchester United defender Gary Neville, now a TV pundit, accusing Chelsea of being nothing more than a “blue billion-pound bottle-job”.

Chelsea, a mediocre 11th in the Premier League, will seek to revive their season at home to Leeds in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Wednesday.

“I said hello to the owners when I saw them in the stadium and after (the final) I met Behdad and we were talking,” Pochettino said, at his pre-match media conference on Tuesday.

“We were sharing our opinions about the game and the opportunity we missed to win a trophy because I think we played really well during the 90 minutes. We created the best chances, we were not clinical enough but that is what has happened since the beginning of the season.

“They (the owners) showed their support and after the game, Todd sent a nice message.”

Pochettino, when asked if he would be given time to transform Chelsea’s fortunes, replied: “It’s not in my hands. We have a very good relationship with the owners, with the sporting director.

“It’s up to them to trust or not. It’s not the coach’s decision.”

In a fresh blow for the club, injury-ravaged France international Christopher Nkunku is set to spend up to a month on the sidelines with an unspecified injury sustained at the weekend.

Red Devils boss rooting for Antony

Meanwhile, Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag says under-performing Antony has the character to “fight back” based on his previous experience of managing the Brazil winger at Ajax.

Antony has yet to make the starting line-up in the Premier League in 2024 but Ten Hag said the 24-year-old has “great abilities”.

“I know from the past, he is unstoppable,” the Dutchman said on Tuesday. “No defender can stop him because he’s one of the quickest players in the first 10 yards. When he plays that game, he will perform.

“I’m very confident he will do it for the future. He is resilient, he is a character and he will fight back. I back him and he now has to wait for his chance and once he is there he has to pick up.”

Ten Hag was speaking ahead of Wednesday’s FA Cup fifth-round tie against Nottingham Forest, with United looking to rebound from their 2-1 loss to Fulham in the Premier League.

The FA Cup represents United’s last realistic hope of a trophy this season, with Ten Hag aware of the expectations around the club. United face Manchester City on Sunday, where defeat would significantly dent their bid for Champions League qualification.

“When you are unbeaten for January and February and you lose one game – we know our aim is to win every game, at United you have to win every game,” said Ten Hag.

Liverpool need a miracle

Injury-ravaged Liverpool, meanwhile, will need a “miracle” with several prominent players in doubt for Wednesday’s FA Cup fifth-round tie against Southampton.

Midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, injured during Sunday’s League Cup final victory over Chelsea, is the latest player from the Premier League leaders to be sidelined for this week’s clash.

AFP

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