Following their disastrous start to the season, Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino and senior defender Thiago Silva have apparently both come under pressure from a dressing room source. The Blues have won just one of their first six games of the season, and they are now ranked 15th in the Premier League.
Chelsea has spent almost £1 billion on new players since Todd Boehly arrived at Stamford Bridge in an effort to help the team regain its status as a title contender while also bringing in youth who can play a major role in the short- and long-term.
Young players with little to no experience competing at the highest level, such as Mykhaylo Mudryk, Moises Caicedo, and Cole Palmer, have all been given contracts that will keep them with the team at least through the year 2028.
Following such a lacklustre start to the season, concerns have been voiced about Chelsea’s transfer policy and whether a small dose of experience is required to bring out the best in the young players and aid in their development. Raheem Sterling and Silva have quickly risen to the position of being the club’s most senior players, but a “dressing room source” informed The Athletic that Silva isn’t really setting an example and has “question[ed] how much Silva is showing he is a winner.”
They assert that despite many believing Silva, 39, should play this position, no one is stepping up and “driving everyone on” and that there isn’t a strong leader who insists on unity. Even though the new season has only been a few weeks old, the international player from Brazil is not the only one to have the blame placed on him.
Pochettino has also come under fire for the ‘limited tactical instruction’ he is giving to his forwards, which is thought to have played a significant role in Chelsea’s goal drought over the past month, as they have only scored five goals in six games despite dominating for long stretches of time.
Instead of giving his forwards more detailed instructions that would become crucial over the course of 90 minutes, the former Tottenham manager is said to have kept his instructions to them very simple. So it’s not unusual for Pochettino to tell his forwards to “express themselves” since he took over as Chelsea manager.
Other people behind the scenes disagree with the critique, believing that the Blues’ injury crisis is preventing the manager from developing the team as anticipated. The club had great hopes for summer addition Christopher Nkunku when he made his injury-related return. Despite being fullbacks, Reece James and Ben Chilwell have both been useful offensive players in the past, so their absence hasn’t helped Pochettino’s cause either.