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Football London
Football London
Scott Trotter

Chelsea transfer plans, priorities - four things learned from Mauricio Pochettino's first day

Mauricio Pochettino is in the building. While the 51-year-old coach may have officially took charge of the Blues on Saturday, Monday saw Pochettino's arrival to get down to work at Cobham.

The new Chelsea boss arrived with Jesus Perez and Sebastiano Pochettino, meeting Toni Jiminez and Miguel D'Agostino in the grounds of Chelsea's training base. Introductions and media work quickly awaited with the former Spurs and PSG coach being presented to the supporter-base for the first time since his appointment was announced in May.

Pochettino, who has signed a two-year contract with the west London side, arrives after a season that saw Thomas Tuchel, Graham Potter, Bruno Saltor and Frank Lampard all take charge at Stamford Bridge. Monday saw his first opportunity to get players and fans on his side in an official capacity.

Pochettino told club media: "We are so happy that today we can start here at Cobham in the training ground and meet the people and the staff. It is exciting for us and what we want is to bring the happiness again to this great football club.

"We will work hard, play in a way the fans can enjoy football, and the history of Chelsea is to win - but it is important also in the way we are going to build those victories."

With that said, takes a look at what we've learned from Pochettino's first day in the job at Cobham.

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The aura and knowing exactly what to say

Given Pochettino's past allegiance to a certain north London football team, his first presentation to the world could hardly have gone much better. Whether it be the authority he commanded in his interview or the Godfather-esque vibe due to the lighting of his photographs, it did not take long for the public to see the 51-year-old as a Chelsea boss.

Where the Blues have lacked at excitement across a number of months, Pochettino has lit a match. Two sentences in particular will have laid solid groundwork for anyone unconvinced.

"I think it’s important and it’s a culture of winning. In the last 10, 12, 15 years, Chelsea is the greatest team in England," he said. "I know very well the Premier League and what the culture of Chelsea means."

While there was nothing wrong with Potter's approach to media, Pochettino displayed a nouse much more akin to the likes of Thomas Tuchel or Jose Mourinho in being able to generate feeling in fans and a headline. Granted, the pressure of the season has yet to arrive, when real tests arrive but there was astuteness in many of the head coach's words.

Pochettino can tread the line

While the Blues boss was quick to impress on the importance of winning to both Chelsea's heritage and future, Pochettino was able to deliver the caveat of the process being different, and the profile of the squad being young. At this stage of the summer, it is obviously not an excuse but in the past it would be easy to see how such phrases would be looked at with suspicion.

Pochettino explained: "We are excited. We are excited to work with a very young team, with a different approach than in the past. But I think we all need to understand that we have to work really hard and create a very good atmosphere at the training ground to build success for the team in the next few years."

Perhaps there is more leeway given Chelsea's failures last season and the turnover currently underway, but once again the former Argentina international had the awareness to bring it back to where the Blues standards should be.

He added later in the interview: "Of course, there are always up and downs in the history of football, but Chelsea is a club that it is impossible to have these up and downs. We need to be sure that we bring what the club needs to be at the top because the history of the club is to be at the top."

With a two-year deal, there is a short timeframe for Pochettino to realise such ambitions. At the same time he refused to over-commit while setting high standards.

"But in the end, we want to win, be competitive, be animals that want to compete every week and in every game."

Transfer plans

It's clear that Chelsea need to complete some business in the transfer window, despite already adding Christopher Nkunku and Nicolas Jackson in addition to a number of teen stars. It is reassuring that Pochettino is willing to acknowledge that process is ongoing in the public sphere and that coach and hierarchy are currently on the same page.

Pochettino said: "It is not closed, the squad, and the club is doing a fantastic job to finish the squad so we have the players here to work with us as soon as possible. Together, we are going to be in a perfect situation to work and develop the way we want to apply ourselves on the pitch."

The Blues boss added: "We have an unbelievable squad and for sure are going to bring players with commitment who want to be part of it also."

Pochettino's second assertion hints at the necessity of adding players who see Chelsea as their future but also the importance of having already parted ways with players, who did not want to remain. It feels certain there will be more exits to come.

Importance of creating team spirit throughout the club

Lampard's final press conference came with the confession that he struggled in a number of areas in his second stint in charge of the club. He referenced 'disillusioned' players, the struggle with to accommodate the size of the squad and also the quietness of the dressing room.

The former Chelsea midfielder's duty was to try and harness some team spirit for the end of the season but he was ultimately unable to do that. It remains a key task for Pochettino to tackle and much of his interview detailed the importance of the relationships with players and supporters. Togetherness was a central theme throughout the questions he was asked.

Even in explaining his expectations for the squad he has inherited, he placed the pressure on himself and his coaching team.

He said: "The expectation is to for them [players] to be open and to let us manage. They need for us, first of all, to create a platform so they can feel comfortable here. They need to have their space and feel important."

"If we are all together, we are going to be very strong," he added. "We have an unbelievable squad and for sure are going to bring players with commitment who want to be part of it also. With the fans and everyone, we can find again the way to be successful."

With so much change in the last 12 months at Chelsea, it would be understandable if there was uncertainty at Cobham. Changing players, coaches, owners and a number of members across the hierarchy of Chelsea, it has been a period of transition. Pochettino hopes to bring everyone together, to create a home-like environment.

He said: "The most important thing is players and staff need to feel that it is our home. It's not only a place to come to work, it's to come here and feel like home. Our responsibility is to help create this feeling and we are fully committed to trying to create a big atmosphere where people can feel really happy to work."

That also extends to creating a bond with supporters: "The players also have to also send the message and emotion. The team sends to the fans, the fans to the team, and the staff to the players."

"The fans need to feel that all the players involved in the game are going to die for the club. That is the most important thing to create this good feeling and for sure feel proud of each other."

Who should Chelsea keep or sell this summer? Let us know down below!

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