Published On: Sun, Sep 17th, 2023
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Mauricio Pochettino leaps to Mykhaylo Mudryk’s defence as Chelsea left frustrated | Football | Sport

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino has jumped to the defence of Mykhaylo Mudryk after the winger failed to make an impact in the Blues’ 0-0 draw with Bournemouth. Chelsea struggled to create many openings at the Vitality Stadium in a display which highlighted that the squad are still lacking in several departments and the club overall is at the very beginning of their project, despite the funds that have already been spent.

Pochettino made it no secret after the full-time whistle sounded that he felt that his side deserved to return to Stamford Bridge with all three points. One of Chelsea’s best chances on the day came in the first half when Nicolas Jackson struck the post with a shot from outside of the box, with the striker also missing a header late on after misjudging the flight of a cross.

Winger Mudryk failed to make his presence felt in the final third as well on his first Premier League start of the season. The Ukraine international showed glimpses of promise but ultimately his end product lacked quality and his influence fizzled out after a few bursts of pace.

However, Pochettino has jumped to the defence of the ex-Shakhtar Donetsk star, saying: “He is improving. He still needs to learn in the Premier League, it’s very fast. He needs to understand the game better, try to be more connected sometimes with the team. We need to give the time and tools for him to improve during the season.”

With Bournemouth gaining more of a foothold in the game as time went on, Pochettino opted to roll the dice and replaced Mudryk with new signing Cole Palmer in the 63rd minute. The ex-Manchester City star offered a different option when moving forward and came close to winning the match for his side with a cute volley that forced an excellent save from Bournemouth’s Neto.

Although their chances were not clearcut, Pochettino’s side were somewhat wasteful when openings did arrive – with Conor Gallagher among those that could have done better when the ball fell to him inside the penalty area. Speaking about his side failing to create chances created by his side, Pochettino told Sky Sports: “We need to be tough in the way that we are trying. We need to prove our efficiency in front of goal. We need to be calm also but these circumstances are not always easy for the players. We cannot blame anyone.

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