The Sun (Malaysia)

Pochettino wants youthful Chelsea to learn from Forest defeat


admitted his youthful Chelsea side need to be more mature after their shock 1-0 defeat against Nottingham Forest on Saturday.

Anthony Elanga’s goal condemned Pochettino’s side to their second loss in the Argentine’s four Premier League games in charge.

Former Manchester United winger Elanga punished a mistake from Moises Caicedo, raced onto Taiwo Awoniyi’s pass and slotted home in the 48th minute at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea have won just once in the league this season and are languishin­g in 11th place.

Pochettino kept faith with the starting line-up that beat Luton 3-0 in the league last week, but his inexperien­ced team struggled to impose themselves against Forest.

“We were not clinical in both areas,” Pochettino said. “We made a mistake and then we created opportunit­ies, but if you don’t score it is difficult to win games.

“This type of game, I think, will help us to be more mature, it is not only about having quality, it is also about competing in different ways.

“Of course we can’t say that we didn’t deserve more, but in football the stats sometimes reflect what you do and in that case we created but we didn’t score and we only had a few shots on target.”

Graeme Souness has criticised Chelsea’s decision to spend £42 million (RM246m) on Cole Palmer after landing the Manchester City winger in a shock transfer deal. The 21-year-old, who started the season in fine form after netting in the Community Shield and Super Cup for his former club, was handed his

Blues’ debut on Saturday.

Souness is less than convinced by the acquisitio­n of Palmer as he believes it’s another example of Chelsea’s scattergun recruitmen­t.

He told “Chelsea’s decision to spend £42.5 million on Cole Palmer, a 21-year-old with three Premier League starts, strikes me as strange and extremely bold.

“It might all come together for Chelsea, who are spending a fortune on players of enormous potential who one day, with a big question mark attached, might be top men for them.

“Their supporters, like all others, want instant success. After a miserable season, they will have limited patience and won’t be slow in venting their frustratio­n. I can see where they’re coming from.”

Chelsea’s owners have spent more than £1 billion (RM5.9b) on new players since buying the club from Roman Abramovich in 2022, including around £380m (RM2.2b) on 10 signings for Pochettino.

At present Chelsea lack cohesion and cutting edge, leaving them prone to punishment if they make a mistake at the back.

West Ham beat the Blues 3-1 despite Chelsea controllin­g possession for long periods and it was a similar story against Forest.

While it is too early to contemplat­e Pochettino being under pressure, the former Paris-Saint Germain and Tottenham boss will have noted Graham Potter lasted just seven months before being sacked by co-owner Todd Boehly last season.

Despite their rocky start, Pochettino remains confident

Chelsea will turn the tide.

“We are building something and it is always up and down. We are unlucky because I think we deserved more against West Ham and today,” he said.

“I have said before, it is only a matter of time.” – AFP/Express Newspapers

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia