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Following Chelsea’s victory, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta displays his real colours by criticising Mauricio Pochettino

Apr 26, 2024 | Sports

Mikel Arteta and Mauricio Pochettino have both urged patience with Chelsea’s young squad following Arsenal’s resounding 5-0 victory over the Blues.

Kai Havertz, facing his former club, netted twice, with Ben White also grabbing a brace after Leandro Trossard’s opener, inflicting a heavy defeat on Chelsea. The result underscored the disparity in quality between the two teams, despite Chelsea’s significant investment under Todd Boehly, mostly in young, promising players as part of a long-term strategy.

When asked about his feelings towards Pochettino, his former teammate at Paris Saint-Germain, Arteta chose empathy over criticism, acknowledging the challenges Pochettino faces. Drawing from his own experiences, Arteta expressed solidarity with Pochettino, recognizing the difficulties of managing a team under intense scrutiny.

“All the sympathy in the world,” said Arteta. “With everything that he’s been through and everything that he’s been doing. He knows that. I’ve been on the other side as well.”

“He’s doing a great job,” Arteta continued. “When you look at this team and analyze every second of them, they deserve to win many matches, they deserve to win against big teams. He’s doing a really good job, so hopefully things will turn around and be as he deserves.”

Pochettino, rather than criticizing his players for their lacklustre performance, opted to support his young squad. He cautioned against being overly critical and urged patience, emphasizing that building a new project takes time and involves inherent risks.

“The club is building a new project, a new way to operate,” Pochettino explained. “That’s why these types of games can happen when you face a team like this, which has been preparing to win the Premier League, to contest for big trophies over the last three or four years.”

“We cannot blame the players,” he emphasized. “The circumstances exceed the players’ performances. We can’t fault young guys who came here and then, after dealing with some issues, needed to compete against a team battling for the Premier League.”

Pochettino concluded by advocating for fairness towards his players, recognizing their efforts amidst challenging circumstances. He acknowledged disappointment with the performance but refrained from using unjust words to describe his team, urging understanding and support as they navigate their journey.

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