5 errors Chelsea's Mauricio Pochettino made despite win over Manchester United

A dejected Mauricio Pochettino. (Photo Credit: Chelsea/X)

5 errors Chelsea's Mauricio Pochettino made despite win over Manchester United

Ayoola Kelechi 14:02 - 05.04.2024

Despite beating Manchester United in a thrilling 4-3 encounter, Chelsea's Pochettino was far from perfect in his tactics

Amidst the euphoria of Chelsea's stunning comeback victory over Manchester United, there were moments of managerial missteps from Mauricio Pochettino that cannot be overlooked.

The Blues, propelled by Cole Palmer's late heroics, secured a memorable win after being two goals down, but Pochettino's tactical decisions and team management raised eyebrows despite the triumph. Let's delve into the five key errors made by the Argentine tactician amidst the exhilarating clash at Stamford Bridge.

Two goals deep into second-half stoppage time helped Chelsea seal the mother of all dramatic wins over Manchester United.

var widgetLoaderConfig = widgetLoaderConfig || { CDN_URL: 'https://widgets.sportal365.com', APP_LINK: 'desktop', API_URL: 'https://africa.football.api.sportal365.com/', API_KEY: '2f852b4de2f3a5cf3188e74b33087bb4:2c18422f8e826a7d11aeed52edb2449e', LANG: 'en', REQUEST_INTERVAL: 30, ENABLE_BET_SLIP: false, AUTHOR: false, THEME: "light", TOURNAMENT_ORDER: "pulse_nigeria", LINK_OPTIONS_V2: { 'player' : { 'url': '/football/player/{playerId}' }, 'team' : { 'url': '/football/{teamId}' }, 'tournament': { 'url': '/football/competition/{tournamentId}' }, 'match': { 'url' : '/football/match/{matchId}', 'sort': { 'criteria': 'alphabetically', 'direction': 'asc' } }, 'configuration': { 'newWindow': false }, 'standings_tournament': { 'url': '/football/competition/{tournamentId}/standings' } } }; if (!document.querySelector('script[src="https://widgets.sportal365.com/loader.bundle.min.js"]')) { window.setTimeout(function () { let scriptCss = document.createElement('link'); scriptCss.href = 'https://www.pulsesports.ng/css/sport-widgets.css?v=1668785443'; scriptCss.rel = 'stylesheet'; scriptCss.type = 'text/css'; document.body.appendChild(scriptCss); let scriptTag = document.createElement('script'); scriptTag.src = 'https://widgets.sportal365.com/loader.bundle.min.js'; scriptTag.defer = true; scriptTag.onload = function () { window.setTimeout(function () { new SMPWidgetsLoader(widgetLoaderConfig); }, 200); }; document.head.appendChild(scriptTag); }, 0); } else { new SMPWidgetsLoader(widgetLoaderConfig); }

The Red Devils came from two goals down to lead 3-2, but the Blues struck twice late on to take all three points, with ex-Manchester City man Cole Palmer netting a stunning hattrick.

The win, which is Chelsea's first over United in 13 attempts in the Premier League, will have done wonders for Mauricio Pochettino's chances of remaining in the Stamford Bridge hot seat. Despite that, there were plenty of things he got wrong tonight and a couple of things he got right. Here's our review, starting with the things he had right.

Mauricio Pochettino against Manchester United | Imago
Mauricio Pochettino against Manchester United | Imago

Chelsea displayed high energy from the outset, scoring an early goal through Conor Gallagher within three minutes. Pochettino's lively demeanour on the touchline mirrored the team's intensity, setting the tone for a proactive performance.

Pochettino's changes in the second half proved effective, with substitutes like Raheem Sterling and Carney Chuweumeka making significant contributions to Chelsea's fightback. Sterling, who was used well in an impact sub role, and Chuweumeka, who's looked a real gem when fit, helped Chelsea turn the tide and find a late equalizer.

Pochettino's tactical adjustments during the match, particularly in the second half, showcased his ability to adapt to the evolving dynamics of the game. The introduction of players like Noni Madueke injected fresh impetus into Chelsea's attack, leading to crucial moments like winning a late penalty.

5 things Pochettino got wrong

Omitting Thiago Silva

He might be knocking on 40, but Thiago Silva is still one of Chelsea's most reliable performers, and it was a mistake to leave him out this evening.

The Blues looked a little shaky at the back at times and could have done with Silva's composure and leadership, especially when Manchester United scored their first goal.

Game Management

After racing into a well-deserved 2-0 lead, the game turned on a sixpence after United's first goal, and Chelsea fell to pieces. Heads dropped, players hid, and soon enough, it was 2-2 - and no more than the visitors had warranted.

helsea's inability to stay composed in the face of adversity is frightening, and Pochettino has to shoulder some of the blame for that.

Open Game Approach

It was mind-boggling to see the game descend into basketball-style end-to-end chaos minutes into the second half. Chelsea were tearing United open on the counter, and then getting torn open in kind.

It speaks to the team's general lack of discipline, which, as you might have noticed, Chelsea fans, keeps leading to individual errors. You can't fault Pochettino for the mistakes of his players, but you can fault him for failing to keep them organized.

Leaving Out Sterling

It initially looked like an inspired decision when the Blues raced into an early lead, particularly as Cole Palmer and Mykhailo Mudryk were looking so bright. But as the game turned away from Chelsea, they could've really done with an unflappable man up top.

Raheem Sterling has been poor in the past few weeks (and months), but he's a resilient so-and-so, and Pochettino could've used some of that confidence from the get-go.

Lack of Consistency

After going ahead, Chelsea completely took their foot off the gas and allowed United back into the tie, almost as if with a hug and warm mug of hot chocolate. They failed to take advantage of their opponent's lack of confidence.

The problem is, Chelsea don't have an awful lot of that either - and it was painfully obvious. In truth, when the Blues netted their second goal, it was against the run of play.

In conclusion, while Chelsea secured a dramatic win over Manchester United, Mauricio Pochettino's management was not without its flaws. Addressing these tactical shortcomings will be crucial for Chelsea's success moving forward, as they aim to compete at the highest level of English football.

Related content