“It’s like asking Carl Lewis to come back and win Gold at The Olympics!” – Craig Burley insists top manager won’t join Chelsea


Football pundit and former footballer Craig Burley believes Jose Mourinho will not make a return to Chelsea if the club parts ways with Mauricio Pochettino.

Pochettino, who is in his first season with the club, has not enjoyed a great stint so far, with the team sitting 11th in the Premier League, 15 points behind fourth place. Their most recent games saw them lose 4-1 to Liverpool at Anfield and 4-2 to Wolverhampton Wanderers at home, drawing the ire of fans and critics.

Meanwhile, Mourinho is currently without a job after being sacked by Roma last month. As per a December 2023 report from journalist Simon Phillips (via The Chelsea Chronicle), the Portuguese tactician is keen on returning to Stamford Bridge.

Mourinho notably managed the Blues twice, first between July 2004 and September 2007, and then between July 2013 and December 2015. In that time, he led the team to three Premier League titles, three EFL Cups, an FA Cup and the Community Shield.

Despite the success he enjoyed, Burley believes a return is not on the cards. The former footballer, who played 130 times for Chelsea between 1989 and 1997, said on ESPN FC (as quoted by The Chelsea Chronicle):

“Listen, that’s not happening. It’s like asking [nine-time track and field Gold medal winner] Carl Lewis to come back and win the gold medal at the Olympics! It won’t happen.”

It’s worth noting that both of Mourinho’s stints at Stamford Bridge ended due to a breakdown in relationships.

He departed by mutual consent in 2007 due to a strain in his relationship with then-owner Roman Abramovich (via The Independent). In 2015, he was sacked due to “palpable tensions” between him and the players (via The Guardian).

Mauricio Pochettino safe for now at Chelsea – Reports

While recent results have not gone down well with fans, Mauricio Pochettino’s job is currently safe, according to the latest reports.

The Standard reported on Tuesday, February 6, that club owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali don’t want to make another mid-season managerial change. They notably did so last season, letting go of Graham Potter in April last year after hiring him only in September 2022.

The report added that while the Blues hierarchy would like to keep Pochettino for the rest of the season, he is still under pressure to deliver results. That will begin with the club’s FA Cup fourth-round replay away to Aston Villa on Wednesday, February 7.

Chelsea‘s next Premier League assignment is on February 12 away to Crystal Palace. Arguably their biggest match of the season will come 13 days after that game when they take on Liverpool in the EFL Cup final at Wembley.

Edited by Anantaajith Raghuraman

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