Ashley Cole and Mauricio Pochettino.

“I really enjoyed watching a Poch team” Chelsea icon Ashley Cole suggests he’s disappointed with Mauricio Pochettino’s exit

Mauricio Pochettino parted ways with Chelsea on Tuesday (May 21) after just one season in charge at Stamford Bridge. There has been a sense of bemusement among fans and legends in response to the decision. The Argentine coach oversaw 27 wins in 51 games during his tenure, guiding the Blues to UEFA Europa League qualification with a sixth-placed finish.

Ashley Cole gave his take on Mauricio Pochettino’s departure and the club’s legendary former left-back highlighted the joy he had watching the youthful team under their former manager. He told TNT Sports:

“As a fan and me watching from the sidelines, yeah, I really enjoyed watching a Poch team. I enjoyed watching young, enthusiastic players trying to come together and build an environment and culture that you’re proud of, and towards the back end of the season, I got to see that. From the outside, I enjoyed watching that team.”

Chelsea endured a miserable run of form during the first half of the season that saw them dwindling mid-table. They suffered many alarming defeats such as a 3-1 loss to West Ham United and a 2-0 defeat to Brentford. Pochettino came under pressure amid unconvincing performances from his team whose mentality was questioned throughout the campaign.

However, Pochettino steered the Blues into European qualification contention as they hit their stride in the second half of the season. His men won five games on the bounce to ensure their sixth-place finish. That wasn’t enough for the former Tottenham Hotspur coach to win over the board and the two parties opted to go their separate ways.

Pochettino earned praise for how he handled and bedded several youngsters into the west Londoners’ youthful squad. Alfie Gilchrist, 20, debuted and caught the eye in defense while Cole Palmer, 22, arrived from Manchester City last summer and ended up winning the Premier League’s Young Player of the Year award.

Chelsea star Cole Palmer bids farewell to Mauricio Pochettino and thanks him for ‘making his dreams come true’

Chelsea's Cole Palmer and Mauricio Pochettino
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Cole Palmer was one of the first Chelsea stars to head to social media and send a message to Pochettino after news broke of his departure. The English attacker thanked his former coach for everything with a post on his Instagram account:

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

Palmer made a £42.5 million move to Stamford Bridge from the Etihad on last summer’s transfer deadline day with many questioning the fee. He quickly proved his doubters wrong, becoming his side’s talisman with 27 goals and 15 assists in 48 games across competitions.

The versatile winger excelled under Pochettino who handed him a much-wanted prominent starting role after a lack of game time at City under Pep Guardiola. He now looks set to play under a new manager but evidently is sad to see the Argentine head for the exit door.

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