Who should Chelsea replace Pochettino with?
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Who should Chelsea replace Pochettino with?

21/05/24 19:20

Chelsea have just confirmed that Mauricio Pochettino has left the club by mutual consent.

The Argentine manager was appointed last summer, he replaced interim manager Frank Lampard.

Pochettino did see some success in his time at Stamford bridge. Chelsea qualified for the UEFA Europa League on the final day of the Premier League season, an improvement on last season's 12th place finish.

As a result of the Former Spurs manager’s dismissal, Chelsea will be looking to quickly appoint a new head coach ahead of the summer transfer window. Here are my top five picks for the role:

Roberto De Zerbi

Just three days before the announcement that Pochettino is leaving Chelsea, came the announcement that Roberto De Zerbi will leave Brighton.

The 44 year-old has had a successful stint on the south coast, leading Brighton to their first stint in the Europa League. Although they were knocked out by Roma, the Seagull’s gave a good impression of themselves on the European stage.

De Zerbi is a tactically brilliant manager that is proven in the Premier League, and is being sought after by some of the biggest clubs in Europe, so Chelsea will likely join the pack chasing the Italian.

Last time they appointed a manager from Brighton, when they paid £21.5 million to snatch Graham Potter, it didn’t work out for Chelsea. However, I’d be completely confident that De Zerbi would have the opposite effect.

Thomas Tuchel

Thomas Tuchel is a blatantly obvious pick, and I don’t think it’s unlikely that the German will return for a second stint in South West London.

Tuchel was first appointed as Chelsea boss in January 2021, replacing Frank Lampard. Chelsea went on to win the Champions League that same year, and the Club World Cup the next.

However, when Chelsea were bought by Todd Boehly in 2022, Tuchel’s responsibilities as head coach changed. Tensions between Tuchel and Boehly grew, and simultaneously a ridiculous amount of signings unsettled Tuchel’s previously successful squad and results on the pitch were impacted. Eventually, Tuchel was let go.

More recently, the German has been managing Bayern Munich. The Bavarians have just gone trophyless for the first year since 2013, so Tuchel’s job security is questionable. Given De Zerbi parting with Brighton, and Bayerns interest in him, Tuchel may become available to be reinstated at Chelsea once more.

Of course, it all depends on whether Tuchel would want to be reappointed.

Ruben Amorim

Ruben Amorim is certainly one to consider for Chelsea.

Back in 2021, the Sporting Lisbon manager led the Portuguese side to their first League title in 17 years. This year, he won it again.

A relaxed manager, with excellent tactical know-how, Amorim was massively rumoured to take the reins at Liverpool following Jurgen Klopp’s departure.

If he does get appointed at Chelsea, gone will be the days of arguments on the pitch over penalties. Amorim promotes hard work and communication from each of his players, putting the desire to win over personal fulfilment.

Amorim may be unproven in England, but he certainly has all the makings of a successful appointment, should he be selected.

Gary O’Neil

When Gary O’Neil took over from Scott Parker at Bournemouth in 2022/23, I thought the Cherries had accepted relegation already.

However, O’Neil transformed them, and guided the south coast side to safety quite comfortably. Bournemouth decided to replace O’Neil with Iraola anyway, who has been brilliant in all fairness.

O’Neil got over it, and moved on to his current role as Wolverhampton Wanderers manager, and he has smashed it. Wolves were an outside shout to be relegated this season, but they haven’t been close to the drop zone once. O’Neil took Wolves to a respectable 14th position.

Although I think it’s unlikely that O’Neil will end up managing Chelsea, I do think he’d be a good appointment if Wolves would let him leave. It would be nice to see what he could do with the Talent readily available in Chelsea’s squad.

Thiago Motta

My favourite pick on the list, Thiago Motta would be an unbelievable appointment for Chelsea.

Most known for his playing time at PSG, Motta has gone on to achieve fantastic things in terms of management. Despite his achievements in both his playing and managing career, I think he is still underrated by fans across the globe.

When he took over Spezia, they faced a transfer ban and were tipped for relegation. However he saved them from the drop two years running, before departing to Bologna. In what is his first season there, he secured Champions League football for the first time since 1964/65.

Motta’s tactics are innovative and potentially revolutionary, any club that lands a young manager of his quality will benefit from long term success. However, Chelsea will have to act fast to beat Juventus to the appointment of the former Barcelona midfielder.

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