Pochettino apologies for ‘nervous’ and ‘stressed’ Chelsea collapse

Mauricio Pochettino apologised to the Chelsea support for “not matching the history of the club” after a 4-2 home loss to Wolves on Sunday dropped the Blues into the bottom half of the Premier League table.

Pochettino’s men were also thrashed 4-1 by Liverpool last week and the Argentine said the “stress” of his difficult first season in charge at Stamford Bridge was having an impact on his young squad.

Cole Palmer’s 10th Premier League goal in just 20 appearances for Chelsea put the home side in front.

But Wolves roared back to secure their first win at Stamford Bridge since 1979 thanks to Matheus Cunha’s hat-trick, while Axel Disasi’s own goal rounded off Chelsea’s misery.

“When we scored the game was for us. Then when we concede we start to feel nervous and we didn’t manage well the stress,” said Pochettino.

“It was difficult to manage the team, the stress. We had chances for 2-2 but then we conceded the third. So disappointed, apologise to the fans and thanks to those who stayed and supported the team until the end. We are sorry and we are disappointed.

“Of course, I think we can change, we felt so disappointed after Liverpool and today it was 1-0 but (we made) too many mistakes which you can’t afford to in the Premier League.”

Chelsea have spent over £1 billion ($1.3 billion) on new players since Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly’s consortium took charge of the club less than two years ago.

But they have gone backwards on the field since sacking Thomas Tuchel early last season and the fans made their voices heard as Pochettino’s men were booed off at full-time.

Pochettino has the chance to turn things around in the League Cup final against Liverpool later this month, but he said his immediate focus was on a FA Cup replay at Aston Villa on Wednesday.

“Of course the disappointment is massive,” added Pochettino. “We started to play with a nervousness, made rash decisions, we need to reset and be ready for the FA Cup on Wednesday against Aston Villa.

“It is normal that we are not matching the history of the club. It is a different project and it is a matter of time but it is difficult for me to always say (we need more) time, time, time.

“We need to show more and the circumstances are difficult. We were good until Liverpool but after Liverpool and Wolves it is like everything is going wrong.”

Victory lifted Wolves above Chelsea into 10th in a very impressive first season under Gary O’Neil.

“It was a real good team performance and an enjoyable one for us, I can’t lie,” said O’Neil, whose side conceded a 97th minute goal to lose 4-3 to Manchester United on Thursday.

“We have come back from setbacks a lot. We suffered heartbreak three days ago after working our socks off to get back against Manchester United, but it was straight to business.

“Really pleased, 32 points is something the group should be proud of at this stage and lets see where we can go.”


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