Enzo Fernandez reveals brutally honest verdict on Mauricio Pochettino with Chelsea future unclear

Enzo Fernandez of Chelsea during a training session at Chelsea Training Ground on February 27, 2024

Enzo Fernandez has heaped praise on Mauricio Pochettino for fixing the 'mess' he walked into at Chelsea. The 23-year-old midfielder, who joined the Blues from Benfica for a record-breaking fee just over a year ago, has already played under four different managers at Stamford Bridge.

He made his debut for the west London outfit under Graham Potter before enjoying brief spells under Bruno Saltor and Frank Lampard for the remainder of last season. Fernandez has since worked closely with Pochettino, helping Chelsea climb the Premier League table after a poor start to the campaign.

While the Blues initially struggled under the former Tottenham Hotspur boss, the Argentina international revealed his fellow countryman has cleared up the 'mess' at Cobham. Despite Pochettino's best efforts, he still faces an uncertain future at Stamford Bridge.

In an interview with DSports, Fernandez claimed the Chelsea boss has transformed the club on and off the pitch. He said: "When I arrived, it was quite a mess, there were many players. Mauricio gave order and an identity to the team. The work ethic is different.

"He changed everything, and the truth is it’s positive. The team is more serious and hard-working. That’s important for day-to-day, and when the weekend comes, you can see the difference."

Fernandez has recently begun a rehabilitation programme after undergoing surgery on a groin injury. While he's has been ruled out of the west Londoners' final games, the midfielder could return to fitness in time to feature for Argentina at the Copa America this summer.

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"I was playing with pain and injections for eight months," Fernandez added. "I had to make the decision to have surgery, it was the best. I was harming the team and didn’t want to expose myself.

"I’m fine, people can relax. I’m getting better day by day, and I’m eager for the Copa America to arrive. I’ve already started training on the pitch, the recovery is advanced, and I hope to be training with the national team soon. I’m very excited for this Copa America, it will be the first time I play in it."

In a separate interview earlier this month, Fernandez revealed just how painful his injury was. "I needed to get this surgery since I had been dragging the pain for about 6 months.

"It was something I could avoid while constantly treating myself with injections and medications. But a few weeks ago the pain started to get more and more intense, without any of this taking effect, and it was worse as I trained and played annoyingly, but I didn't want to stop being in the games I had.

"Whenever I got to play with Chelsea jersey, like the national team, I always try to do my best despite all this but I can't stand it anymore. Thank you for the messages, encouragement and your token of love always. Shout out to everyone I promise you I’m coming back stronger than ever."

Pochettino has offered Fernandez his condolences, backing him to bounce back next term. The Chelsea boss said: "For sure he is going to be much better next season, after the experience of the whole season in this squad and this team.

"He’s more experienced, he gets better feelings. The whole season is good for him to learn. Even if he is a world champion, he needs to adapt to the Premier League and to this club. For me, there is no doubt that he is going to be much better."