Monday is here again which means it’s time for ‘Morning Mix’ – our weekly football column with a bit of music thrown in for good measure.
We look at a major talking point from the past seven days and point you in the direction of some of the best football stories elsewhere on the internet.
We also offer a top tune recommendation to get you in the mood for the next week and what to watch out for over the coming days. Let’s get the ball rolling.
Pochettino is not guaranteed to thrive at Chelsea
Plenty of people appear to be willing to assume that Mauricio Pochettino will be successful as Chelsea manager, but it’s a dangerous presumption to make.
Pochettino has reportedly agreed to join the club this summer, ending Chelsea’s long-winded search for a permanent replacement for Graham Potter.
The Argentine received plenty of plaudits for his time at Tottenham Hotspur despite failing to end the club’s wait to win silverware.
He put together an extremely strong team, but when it came to taking that all-important next step they did not get the job done.
Tottenham were on the wrong end of the scoreline against Chelsea in the 2014/15 League Cup final and blew a golden opportunity to win the Premier League title the following season.
They also came up short in the 2018/19 Champions League final, with Pochettino’s side unable to take advantage of an underwhelming performance by Liverpool.
He subsequently underachieved with Paris Saint-Germain, missing out on the Ligue 1 title in his first season and failing to deliver an elusive Champions League success.
Pochettino guided PSG to the league crown the following season but saw his star-studded team flop again in UEFA’s top club competition.
PSG’s failure in Europe in Pochettino’s second season was made even more remarkable as he had forwards Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Lionel Messi at his disposal.
With Pochettino’s style of football not particularly pleasing to the eye, it’s tough to see why so many people are excited at the prospect of him managing Chelsea.
Their huge outlay on players will put pressure on Pochettino to deliver immediate results, and his time at PSG suggests he may not have what it takes to handle some of the sizeable egos in the dressing room.
Given Pochettino’s managerial career to date, his appointment is a risky move by Chelsea. In betting terms, the Blues are a surefire ‘lay’ under the former Tottenham boss.
The week that was
Are you looking for the best football stories from the past week? Check these out:
- If the Chelsea owners and players buy into Pochettino’s vision, then the sky is the limit.
- Eamonn Bannon on Dundee United’s class of 83: ‘The shame is it will never be repeated’.
- Two strikers and five subs: The secrets to Inter Milan’s success.
Today’s top tune
Friday night was spent at Blackpool Opera House watching indie legends James on the latest gig of their magical 40th-anniversary tour.
Backed by a fabulous orchestra and spine-tingling gospel choir, the band delivered a stunning night that will live long in the memory.
A particular highlight was ‘The Shining’, which was a timely reminder there are plenty of hidden gems in their extensive back catalogue.
What to watch this week
If you’re looking for a drama recommendation from Morning Mix, watch the Football League play-offs this week. Five of the six semi-final games are finely balanced. Thrills and spills are guaranteed!
Not ignoring the 500-ton behemoth in the room – Manchester City are well on their way to becoming Premier League champions.
And if Nottingham Forest beat Arsenal on Saturday, City would be champions before they walk on the pitch on Sunday.
A final Morning Mix thought
Remember when we were told that the VAR system can only be used to overturn a decision if a ‘clear and obvious error’ has been identified?
If that’s the case, Leeds United can feel slightly aggrieved about conceding a penalty after Junior Firpo decided to flail his arm around like a windmill.
BT Sport’s after-match video analysis pumped the ball up to the size of a beach ball and still didn’t deliver a definitive answer. Clear and obvious error? Nope.