Mauricio Pochettino has Kylian Mbappe and Harry Kane plan to correct Graham Potter Chelsea error


Mauricio Pochettino's talent ID and stance on young players could serve him well should Chelsea turn to the former Tottenham manager in the future. Current manager Graham Potter is facing his toughest test in charge after falling to a 1-0 defeat to rock bottom Southampton. The result, part of a wider run of one win in 10 games, has enfuriated fans and seen speculation over his job rise.

Although the current message from the new owners continues to be in support of Potter - a man they gave a six year contract back in September, handing him plenty of trust - that patience is being tested. Chelsea have had £600million spent on their squad since the summer and although working conditions are far from ideal with injured players returning, new members gelling and contract negotiatons ongoing with several stars, there is a staggering level of underperformance.

The sheer volume of staff turnover from top to bottom has seen stability drop and uncertainty grow. Potter is at the centre of this perfect storm and has been greeted by a less than willing to adapt fanbase who continually boo him and his side. It has seen Potter now become favourite to be the Premier League's next manager to be sacked, with Pochettino top of the list to replace him.

It's been three and a half years since the Argentine coach was in England in a job but his name is consistently linked with new roles. Given his impressive work at Tottenham with a young squad in transition it is understandable why he is in the crop of names around the potential SW6 hotseat.

Pochettino took over in north London after the failure of former Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas, a young manager with high hopes but struggling to assert himself. Sound familiar? Pochettino quickly became one of the top rated young head coaches in the game, leading Spurs towards two two unlikely title challenges and a Champions League final. It is outside of this that his fit for Chelsea is best explained though.

Working for the Athletic during the World Cup, Pochettino explained his methods of man management and with young players. Citing the example of Harry Kane, who scored more than 150 goals for Pochettino across six seasons, the 50-year-old explained why he was initially omitted from the squad and how it was dealt with.

"We showed Harry, with video clips and with stats, that he was wrong. We showed him running stats, the positioning of shots, everything we could find. Because if a player has played poorly, it’s important for them to realise why we as coaches think they have.

"We had to show Harry he still needed to improve in different areas. He was heading in the right direction, but he still needed to wait and to prove to us he was better than his team-mates and that he deserved to start. It was a really tough conversation, but it was also a really good conversation."

This may bode well for Chelsea who not only have a team of young players coming through - all of their eight January signings were 23 or under and an entire XI of players 24 or under have been purchased by Boehly/Clearlake since the summer - but also a large squad to currently deal with.

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