Chelsea: Boehly to ‘welcome’ ex-manager’s return with ‘great enthusiasm’ amid Pochettino sack talk

Lewis Oldham
Chelsea manager
Jose Mourinho alongside Antonio Conte.

Chelsea could reportedly ‘welcome’ the return of one of their former managers in the summer with Mauricio Pochettino coming under increasing pressure.

Pochettino is towards the end of his first season as Chelsea’s head coach but he is under serious pressure as his squad have underperformed this season.

Chelsea to replace Pochettino?

Under the former Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea were beaten in the Carabao Cup final by Liverpool and sit 11th in the Premier League.

Chelsea’s season is not over, though. Over the weekend, they beat Leicester City to reach the quarter-finals of the FA Cup and some have argued that Pochettino needs to win this competition if he’s to keep his job heading into next season.

The Premier League giants have been linked with several potential replacements in recent months and Antonio Conte is the latest name in the frame.

The 54-year-old previously won the Premier League and FA Cup during his first spell as Chelsea’s manager but he’s been out of work since leaving Tottenham towards the end of last season.

Italian journalist Massimo Ugolini thinks key figures at Chelsea “would be welcomed back with great enthusiasm”.

“He [Antonio Conte] could even return to Chelsea. He would be welcomed back with great enthusiasm,” Ugolini said (via Caught Offside).

“Watch out for Juventus too. In this spending-review phase, it’s not as if they couldn’t afford him.”

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“Two places that I would like to experience…”

“Certainly Napoli and Roma are two places that I would like to experience for the passion they convey to you,” Conte told the Italian TV show Belve.

“I hope that someday there will be the possibility of having this experience. But I wouldn’t join a team mid-season because those are situations where the team is created before your arrival.”

Regarding interest from Saudi Arabia, he added: “I’ve rejected a huge proposal from Saudi. I decided to say no.”

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Former Chelsea defender William Gallas thinks Pochettino will “be in charge next season” if his side win the FA Cup.

“Look, when you’re in the quarter-final, with the opportunity to go to Wembley, you have to keep going,” Gallas told Genting Casino.

“I think Poch’s future will depend on him winning the FA Cup. If he can lift that trophy, then I expect him to be in charge next season. He also needs to win it for himself because he has never lifted a trophy in England as a manager.”

He added: “Everything in football is about the results. The fans aren’t happy with him, not because he used to be the manager of Tottenham, but because the results haven’t been good enough for Chelsea this season.

“If the results were better, if he won the Carabao Cup, if Chelsea were in a position where they could qualify for the Champions League, then the fans wouldn’t have a problem with Pochettino.”