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Pochettino: Chelsea reaching Europe ´the first step´ to bigger things

SoccerNews in English Premier League 19 May 2024

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Mauricio Pochettino believes Chelsea finishing in the European spots is “the first step” to restoring the club back to its former glories.

A 2-1 win over Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge in the final game of the campaign ensured that Chelsea would be playing European football next season with a sixth-placed finish.

The Blues are guaranteed at least a Europa Conference League spot. However, should Manchester City beat Manchester United in the FA Cup final next Saturday, Chelsea will play in the Europa League instead.

Pochettino feels this is just the beginning as the club looks to return to the upper echelons of European football.

“For the history of Chelsea, it is hard to celebrate,” Pochettino told Sky Sports. “But it is the first step to achieve bigger things after.

“We are really close. Season by season it is about improving. We know how we need to compete next season. We have a young squad but with more experience in the Premier League now.”

Chelsea lost just one of their last 15 Premier League games of the season, winning the last five as they made a late charge into the European places.

Pochettino is proud of how his team performed at the conclusion of the campaign, saying: “We played against a team [Bournemouth] in a very good run and who also had the whole week to prepare.

“I think the way we played and created chances, we had the chances to score more goals.

“I am so happy with the run in the last part of the season. Credit to the players, and that is how we want to compete.”

There has been much discussion over Pochettino’s future, with the former Tottenham boss’ job reportedly at risk despite the strong end to the season.

When asked about his future at Stamford Bridge, Pochettino replied: “That is a question for the owners and the sporting director.”

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