Chelsea players ‘welcome’ Pochettino appointment as ‘real reason’ club snubbed Nagelsmann revealed

Will Ford
Pochettino targeted by Aston Villa

Mauricio Pochettino is edging closer to becoming the new Chelsea manager as a report reveals the ‘real reason’ Julian Nagelsmann won’t be getting the job.

Reports have suggested Nagelsmann walked away from Chelsea as he grew impatient with the process, but it’s now been claimed it’s the club that backed away from negotiations.

Nagelsmann was favourite for the vacant permanent position at Stamford Bridge, along with Luis Enrique, but both of those candidates are now thought to be out of the running.

It’s been claimed that Chelsea were concerned that Enrique hadn’t managed a club side since 2017, when he left Barcelona, but Fabrizio Romano reported that it was Nagelsmann who had decided to end talks with the Premier League side.

“Luis Enrique is out of the race to become new Chelsea coach — no changes at all. It was decided on club side,” Romano said.

“Mauricio Pochettino remains the favourite candidate as revealed on Friday after the Julian Nagelsmann situation changed. I’ll have more to follow on Poch soon.

“With Nagelsmann, timing was not helping. Chelsea wanted to take some more time and speak to other candidates; Nagelsmann was expecting faster talks. Also some crucial points on the vision and on future project were not agreed.

“So Nagelsmann decided to leave the negotiations, though it’s also fair to say that Chelsea choice was never 100% made or completed.”

But that report is at odds with claims from Football Insider, who claim that it was Chelsea who decide against Nagelsmann due to fears over his ability to handle big players.

The report states: ‘A well-placed source has revealed that Chelsea were left impressed by Nagelsmann’s technical quality, his ideas and his modern approach. But after speaking to respected footballing figures, the Londoners grew concerned about his struggles to connect with big names and egos in the dressing room.’

The German manager’s rift with club captain Manuel Neuer in his time with Bayern Munich was cited as an example.

As is the case at Bayern, Chelsea’s squad is packed with star names, and the club hierarchy are more attracted to Pochettino for that reason, who is said to have had a good relationship with top players in his time at Paris Saint-Germain.

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And The Guardian claim ‘the move towards Pochettino has been welcomed in the Chelsea dressing-room, with players said to be positive and excited about his possible appointment’.

The England players are aware of glowing reports from Tottenham stars about the Argentinian and ‘there is acknowledgement in the squad for his coaching skills, together with his reputation for being a good man-manager and motivator’.

The report continues: ‘Pochettino is also viewed as a coach with the sort of profile and experience, having also been in charge at Paris Saint-Germain, befitting of Chelsea by some of the more experienced and successful members of the club’s squad.’