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Chelsea Enzo Maresca appointment will not worry Arsenal despite Pep Guardiola blueprint

Arsenal could face off against Chelsea led by Enzo Maresca next season
-Credit: (Image: Plumb Images/Leicester City FC via Getty Images)


Arsenal know all too well the benefits of a coach who has worked under the tutelage of Pep Guardiola. While Mikel Arteta has had a progressive near-five-year spell with the Gunners, one of their London rivals Chelsea might also be moving toward a similar appointment.

Following the dismissal of Mauricio Pochettino after just one year and a sixth-place finish with the club, the so-called project plan which Todd Boehly has craved at his west London side looks to be in tatters. However, an astute appointment like Enzo Maresca would follow the blueprint set by Arsenal with Arteta.

The Spaniard has certainly become something of an inspiration for clubs and the success of Xabi Alonso at Bayer Leverkusen has only furthered that trend. Bayern Munich’s appointment of Vincent Kompany as head coach is yet another hopeful decision of securing a long-term project at a top club with a young coach.

Maresca has taken Leicester City straight back up to the Premier League, winning one of the most competitive leagues in the world in the Championship. He also worked with Chelsea youngster Cesare Casadei and helped integrate him into the Leicester side before he returned to his parent club in January.

football.london understands the Blues have held talks with Leicester over an approach for Maresca, while it's also understood Roberto De Zerbi and Thomas Frank are still in the running to replace Pochettino. Maresca's work with younger players certainly will be attractive to Boehly considering the amount that has been invested in young stars at the club. Only Cole Palmer has managed to be labelled a unanimous success with others like Mykhailo Mudryk, Noni Madueke, Axel Disasi and Benoit Badiashile still having many questions facing them.

That said there are no guarantees that anyone can succeed with Chelsea in the current setup. With decision-making so heavily influenced by those away from the dugout, it does not provide the best foundation for any incoming coach to succeed.

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Compare that to Arsenal where Arteta is so heavily involved with the off-field activities. In fact, he is relied upon for it and expects to be included in the fabric of any decision-making.

However, it is his work early on during his tenure, such as winning the FA Cup and Community Shield which earned him a promotion to manager from head coach and the trust of the decision makers higher up. An Arsenal without Arteta is now very difficult to imagine.

Maresca has already faced some scrutiny from Leicester fans about his style of play. But in a press conference in January, the Italian batted away these claims. However, it did suggest that perhaps Chelsea would need some patience to adapt to his style like the Foxes have needed.

“I arrive in this club to play with this idea," he said. "The moment there is some doubt about the idea, the day after I will leave. It's so clear. No doubts."