Mauricio Pochettino reveals what Chelsea’s ‘problem’ has been this season

    Mauricio Pochettino has denied that Chelsea’s struggles this season are down to the young players in his squad, instead arguing the Blues are still gelling as a squad.

    Chelsea have made a clear effort to buy young players since the arrivals of Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital and have often been accused of lacking the necessary experience to win games in the Premier League.

    Asked whether he agrees with that criticism, Pochettino argued the age of his players was irrelevant and instead pointed to the fact the team is full of players who are still learning how to play alongside one another.

    “I am not picking the team because they are young,” he stressed. “I don’t want to be the coach that picks the youngest team in England.

    “We are a young team, but we have a good balance. We have players like Thiago Silva, 39, Raheem Sterling, [Christopher] Nkunku, 26, or [Axel] Disasi.

    “The problem is not that the players are so young. The problem is that the team is young. With 16 or 17 players that have arrived new from the beginning of the season, you need to build a team.”

    Thiago Silva

    Silva is clearly the oldest member of the team / Richard Heathcote/GettyImages

    Pochettino also stressed that veteran defender Silva does not need a special role in the Chelsea squad due to his experience, vowing to treat the Brazilian like any other member of the team.

    “All the players are in the same position as him,” he said. “We always assess after every single game the performance of the player and then we take the decision. He is not different from the others.

    “I always make my decisions trying to provide good balance to the team. I don’t look at the passport or the age of the player. I think it’s always about quality and how we can get the best balance for the team.

    “Benoit [Badiashile] wasn’t available for a long time because he was injured. Disasi was injured, [Trevoh] Chalobah was injured, [Wesley] Fofana was injured. We always try to find the formation and players that can perform and win games.”


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