‘I accept criticism’, Pochettino reacts to call for sack from Chelsea fans
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Mauricio Pochettino admitted he might “behave the same” as frustrated Chelsea fans after they called for his sacking during last week’s draw against Brentford.

The London club are 11th in the Premier League during a miserable first season at the helm for the former Tottenham and Paris Saint-Germain boss, who is yet to win silverware in England.

The Argentine, who is preparing his injury-hit squad to face Newcastle on Monday, said he needed to “accept the criticism”.

“We need to try to improve in the way we play and the result and try to change this feeling,” he said at his pre-match press conference on Thursday.

“I hope on Monday the fans will be right behind us and helping the team to win the game.

“But we need to accept that is football. Maybe if I was a fan, I would behave the same as them because it’s Chelsea, we are not matching the expectation.”

Pochettino, 52, has failed to revitalise the big-spending club, whose supporters are used to winning trophies, and there is mounting speculation that his job is under threat.

Defender Ben Chilwell is the latest player to be sidelined after picking up a knee problem.

“There is always something,” said Pochettino. “It’s very, very frustrating and disappointing because the situation never allowed us to work with the full squad and say ‘come on, now compete’… but we need to accept the circumstances, very bad luck.”

He said he still believes he can turn things around at the club, who suffered the disappointment of defeat by Liverpool in the League Cup final last month.

“For me it’s about believing,” he said. “I really believe that we can succeed and (if) we analyse all the circumstances, with all these problems here we are in a situation that we got to a final, we were fighting for the first trophy and we fully deserved after 90 minutes to win the game.

“We have beaten teams like Brighton, Newcastle.”

Chelsea earlier Thursday announced pre-tax losses of £90.1 million ($115 million) in the 12 months to June 2023, their first full year under the ownership of Todd Boehly’s Clearlake Capital consortium.

The figure, an improvement on the previous year’s loss of £121.4 million, was also listed in the accounts filed for holding company BlueCo.

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