Mauricio Pochettino looks likely to be the man in the dugout for Chelsea next season and the 51-year-old could unearth his next Christian Eriksen in Enzo Fernandez.
What’s the latest on Pochettino to Chelsea?
Pochettino has reportedly reached an agreement with the west London side to become their next manager but will have to wait until the summer to take over after it was confirmed that Frank Lampard will remain as interim until the end of the season.
The Chelsea legend has lost all five of his games in charge to confirm that he isn’t the right man for the job full-time, and it is easy to see why Pochettino wouldn’t want to take over now, as the Blues have nothing to play for and are free falling in the Premier League table.
However, the former Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur boss has apparently seen enough from Stamford Bridge to be convinced to take the job, and he must surely consider trimming the squad ahead of next season, with reports suggesting that some were forced to sit on the floor under Graham Potter given the sheer number players under contract.
Todd Boehly’s signings have on the whole proven unsuccessful but the crème de la crème has arguably been record-signing Fernandez, who has caught the eye despite Chelsea’s woeful form.
Who does Enzo Fernandez play like?
The World Cup winner, who arrived in a £106.8m deal from Benfica, has contributed two assists in his 12 Premier League appearances, averaging a strong 6.90 rating from WhoScored which ranks him as the fifth-best performer in Lampard’s squad.
However, it still feels like Chelsea fans are yet to see the best of the 22-year-old, as he has averaged just 1.1 key passes and 1.1 shots per game in the Premier League, compared to 1.8 and 1.7 at Benfica, where he notched five assists in the first half of the campaign.
His performances in the Portuguese Liga and at the World Cup in Qatar saw him dubbed a “phenomenon” by football talent scout Jacek Kulig and it seems clear that under new management, the £180k-per-week star can establish himself as a key player at Chelsea for years to come.
As per FBref, the Argentine ranks in the top 3% of midfielders across Europe for passes attempted and progressive passes per game, which suggests that he could become the chief creator at Chelsea under Pochettino.
The former PSG boss has always shown a preference for a creative midfielder in his starting 11, as no player has featured in more games under the 51-year-old than Manchester United star, Christian Eriksen.
The Danish maestro arguably endured the best performance of his career under the incoming Chelsea boss having contributed a remarkable 58 goals and 76 assists in 255 appearances for Pochettino at Spurs.
That is an outstanding record from midfield and one Chelsea’s record-signing will no doubt aspire to live up to.
With Fernandez likely to be at the Blues for a number of years to come, Pochettino will be looking to unlock the midfielder’s obvious creative abilities and turn him into a club legend, starting next season.
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