Mauricio Pochettino set to hand Arsenal boost with Chelsea plan already failing

Chelsea caretaker manager Frank Lampard reviews Forest draw

Mauricio Pochettino has not even officially taken charge as Chelsea’s next permanent head coach yet, but the former Tottenham boss is already fighting a losing battle to keep Mason Mount at the club. The Blues are expected to announce the arrival of Pochettino as successor to Graham Potter this week, knowing that the Argentine faces a tough task to trim their bloated squad, and Mount could be the first player to leave against his wishes with Arsenal waiting to pounce.

Pochettino will sign a three-year contract this week to June 2026 once he flies in from Barcelona, with Chelsea poised to announce his appointment as the fifth manager to work under Todd Boehly since the American billionaire’s takeover.

However, the size of his task in repairing the damaged west London club is already daunting and it won’t be helped at all if his former foes Arsenal swoop in to snatch Mount from under their noses this summer.

It is understood that relations between Chelsea and Mount are at an ‘all-time low’ after months of protracted negotiations. The 24-year-old has turned down several offers from the club to extend his deal – including a one-year extension with a pay rise that was regarded as a ploy to increase his transfer value.

Arsenal ‘holding Mason Mount talks’ could spell the end for Emile Smith Rowe[LATEST]

Mount wants to feel valued as he faces the biggest decision contract of his career and is expecting to become one of the club’s highest-paid players. Todd Boehly tried and failed to get him to sign one of their infamous seven-year contracts, while co-sporting directors Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart have not enjoyed any more success in talks with Mount’s representatives.

It seems to be beyond Pochettino’s remit in convincing Mount to stay, even if the 51-year-old has promised to give the midfielder a central part in his plans next season. 

And that puts Liverpool, Arsenal and Bayern Munich in pole position to the land the England international, with the Gunners keen to strengthen their squad after their defeat against Brighton all but confirmed they had lost out on the title to Manchester City.

Liverpool aim to win £70m Alexis Mac Allister race and eye Mason Mount[TRANSFERS]
Pochettino jeopardises Liverpool’s Mason Mount plan with Chelsea recommendation[INSIGHT]
Chelsea stars’ reaction to Mauricio Pochettino appointment emerges[REACTION]

Mikel Arteta has made no secret of his wish to recruit a central midfielder, with Declan Rice and Moises Caicedo high on his list of targets. Reports suggest the Spaniard is a fan of Mount’s abilities and if he is to be sold by Chelsea this summer, the Gunners will be included in the conversation.

Few players embody the high-intensity approach to football in the Chelsea squad better than Mount does, and losing him could prove to be a hammer blow to Pochettino’s preparations for next season – just as much as he could be the missing ingredient in Arsenal’s title push in 2023-24.

Pochettino would loathe to lose the playmaker to Arsenal not only due to his affection for Spurs, but also because are many qualities that Mount has in his repertoire that he would certainly appreciate.

At Tottenham, he found it to be a point of pride that his side were consistently top of the charts in terms of distance covered and sprints during games, highlighting their impressive fitness levels. And Mount, in addition to his ability to score and create from midfield, is excellent at carrying out pressing instructions and making intelligent runs.

Mount remains a popular member in the dressing room and with the fans, and has been highly praised by all three permanent coaches that he has played under at Stamford Bridge – Potter, Thomas Tuchel and especially Frank Lampard. So it is no surprise that Arteta and Jurgen Klopp both huge admirers of the Chelsea academy graduate.

And Pochettino will be desperate to ensure keeping Mount – his first and most important objective on his Chelsea to-do list – doesn’t end in failure.

Source: Read Full Article