Romano reveals ‘sad’ Chelsea squad ‘reaction’ to Pochettino sack as 22-year-old slams decision

Jason Soutar
Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino hugs striker Nicolas Jackson
Mauricio Pochettino hugs Nicolas Jackson

Fabrizio Romano says the Chelsea squad were ‘saddened’ by the club’s decision to sack Mauricio Pochettino, with several players hinting they are upset through social media.

Pochettino was relieved of his duties on Tuesday after guiding Chelsea to a sixth-place finish in the Premier League.

It was a very testing campaign for the Blues, with the Argentine’s future being uncertain pretty much from his first day on the job.

Chelsea were lingering in mid-table for much of the season but a strong end to the season secured Europa League qualification, assuming Manchester United do not win the FA Cup.

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Pochettino looked to have the backing of the playing squad, with star player Cole Palmer saying earlier this month that the players “love” the Argentine.

“Chelsea is a big club, everyone wants to finish higher than sixth, but we have to look at where we’ve been at the start of the season, throughout the season,” Palmer said.

“We’ve been 13th and 12th this season. Last season was the same, so to get back into Europe is a step in the right direction.

“Big credit to the manager because all the players love him, we’ve got to fight for him.”

Chelsea players angrily react to Pochettino sack

And following Pochettino’s departure, Palmer took to Instagram to say thank you to the former Tottenham gaffer.

He wrote: “Gaffer, thank you for everything you have done for me & making my dreams come true. All the best.”

Malo Gusto also expressed his love for Pochettino on social media, as did Marc Cucurella, who reacted with three embarrassing, blushed face emojis and: “Thanks for everything Mister. Good luck in the future.”

The angriest of the bunch was undoubtedly Nicolas Jackson, as the 22-year-old could only express his emotions through three facepalm emojis.

As the old saying goes, three emojis speak a thousand words.

Chelsea: Romano reveals overall squad reaction to Pochettino sack

Writing in his CaughtOffside column, expert Fabrizio Romano said the news of Pochettino’s exit was ‘not that surprising’ due to how ‘tense’ it has been between the manager and the club’s hierarchy all season.

Romano does state that the ‘players are saddened’ by the decision, which was a ‘complicated’ one made by co-owners Todd Boehly – who reportedly wanted to keep Pochettino – and Behdad Eghbali – who was ‘lukewarm’ to the idea.

📣 TO THE COMMENTS! Is sacking Pochettino the right call from Chelsea? Join the debate here…

“Big news yesterday evening as it was confirmed that Mauricio Pochettino is leaving Chelsea with immediate effect,” Romano wrote. “The story might have come as a bit of a surprise to some, but I must admit I’m not that surprised because the reality is that the situation has been tense for the entire season, with some positive moments and some negative moments.

“Despite a strong run of form from Chelsea towards the end of the season, the feeling at the club was that not everyone was on the same page and that is why they have decided to part ways with the manager.

“There were very honest meetings, with many topics discussed about the past, present and future, and then Chelsea’s owners and Pochettino decided to part ways. I mentioned earlier this week that the situation was still open because of so many different people involved in the decision. It was a complicated decision and the end of the season was very positive for Chelsea, but Pochettino also spoke recently and suggested he wasn’t feeling that confidence from people at the club.

“From what I’m hearing, the reaction inside the dressing room is that the players are quite surprised. The feeling was that the end of the season was sending a clear message, and that you could see the results of the entire season together between Pochettino and these players, so many of them were expecting the manager to stay. Many players are sad, some are surprised, but it’s also part of the game when a manager is not staying at the club…I can understand that.

“Still, it’s not just about the relationship with the players, there also had to be the right feeling between the manager and other figures at the club.”

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