Before the January window opened, Pochettino called for more signings but there have been no incomings at Chelsea in a quiet market across the entire Premier League. That has left the Argentine boss with a squad that has failed to impress so far this season and sit 10th in the table.
That has ramped up the pressure on Pochettino, who at the start of the campaign challenged his squad to compete for the title. But former Chelsea defender Frank Leboeuf believes that the issue lies beyond the head coach.
When asked if he was on the Chelsea board whether he would sack or stick with Pochettino, Leboeuf told ESPN: “Well if I was a member of the Chelsea board I would sack myself, that’s the first decision I would make. Because of the bad decision we made to hire some players and pay so much money.
“I always say, when Pochettino signed I don’t know what he can do. That’s a real, real problem that they put like a gangrene inside the club and it’s going to be very hard and very long to heal from that because the players are young. Yes, they are talented, but they need some other players to settle everything down to make sure everything works.
“I see Manchester United like 10 years ago struggling with that, we saw Arsenal struggling with that, it’s going to be a long time for Chelsea to heal from those decisions. So I would try to stick with Poch and I would spend more money to get some experienced players. The problem is the experienced players, the top players, they don’t want to come to Chelsea.”
Leboeuf believes that more experience is needed in the Chelsea squad, but no additions are expected on deadline day. The Blues’ financial position has forced them to be more wary of their spending, as they are no longer able to amortise transfer fees over periods longer than five years, after nine-year deals were handed out to a number of incomings to spread the costs.
Now sales have been required to offset new signings, but Chelsea failed to find a suitor willing to pay their £50million asking price for Armando Broja and the likes of Trevoh Chalobah and Malang Sarr are set to remain at Stamford Bridge despite being deemed surplus to requirements.
It is a situation that Chelsea could face again in future transfer windows, as their reckless spending has come back to bite them and Leboeuf feels that even more investment is needed to correct the “gangrene” that has set in.