'Massive gamble, good luck' - Enzo Maresca verdict given as Chelsea finally confirm new manager

Chelsea have announced the appointment of Enzo Maresca as their new head-coach on a five-year deal.

The 44-year-old has taken over following the exit of Mauricio Pochettino last month by mutual consent, after a successful season in charge at Leicester City which saw the Foxes promoted to the Premier League.

The Italian has previously worked with the likes of Manuel Pellegrini at West Ham and Pep Guardiola at Manchester City, and has received plenty of plaudits from players following his year in charge at the King Power Stadium.

But is he ready for such a big step up at Stamford Bridge? The Chelsea ownership have set their standards high, making it clear that a sixth-place finish for the Blues was not enough for Pochettino to keep his job this summer. writers give their verdict below on the appointment of Chelsea's new boss.

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Bobby Vincent - Chelsea writer

It's a risk, there is no doubt. Maresca has just one-and-a-half seasons of experience being the manager at a senior level.

But sometimes risk reaps rewards and from Chelsea's perspective, the club's ownership group will be desperate for that to be the case here. They cannot really afford to get this one wrong.

The fact they are giving Maresca five years, possibly six if they deem it necessary, shows the backing they are prepared to give. There are going to be times when he comes under pressure in his debut season at Stamford Bridge - just like we saw in Mauricio Pochettino's case.

The club, though, cannot afford to be reactionary in these times. They have to stick by their guns and give him time. I do believe if he is backed fully, then Chelsea will at least be a very entertaining side to watch - and that is what the owners want.

Once the style of play is implemented fully and Maresca has the players to fit his system, then the results should come. It is, truly, a fascinating appointment.

Joe Doyle - Content Editor

It's a massive gamble - but the Chelsea owners seem to be pretty comfortable making those.

Sacking Thomas Tuchel just a week after the transfer window closed showed exactly how these owners operate, and Mauricio Pochettino's exit last month confirmed how high they've set their standards.

It's a pretty daunting atmosphere for Maresca to enter; Chelsea finished the season on a high and Pochettino seemed to have the backing of the players. Ripping it all up and starting once again won't be easy.

Whether he has the capability to deal with it? Only time will tell. But one thing that's been clearly shown in recent years at Stamford Bridge is that he won't have much of that in which to prove himself.

Lee Wilmot - Head of football

When all is said and done this is a pretty underwhelming appointment from Chelsea's point of view. But then again, perhaps that's just what they needed.

A fourth different permanent head coach at Stamford Bridge in the two years that Todd Boehly and Clearlake Capital have been in charge says it all. This is a club that needs stability, somewhere, somehow. The question is, will Enzo Maresca provide this, or will we once again be talking abut anew manager in west London next year?

Maresca is another Pep Guardiola disciple. The plan is clear. But, let's not forget, Mikel Arteta finished eighth with Arsenal in his first two seasons at the helm, before making his mark with back-to-back Premier League title challenges. Will Maresca get two seasons? Mauricio Pochettino was already halfway to that point, with a sixth-placed finish and now he's been replaced.

I can't help but think this is Chelsea drifting from one miss-step to another. Good news for the rest of the Premier League.

Josh Holland - Football writer

When Pochettino left Chelsea, I didn't think Maresca would be anywhere near the running for the job. Even after his delightful football and great debut season at Leicester, he was one name I wouldn't expect to be linked.

Fast forward just over the week and he's the man. Chelsea have to get this one right, there's no time left for Clearlake Capital to waste in their endeavour of winning at Stamford Bridge. Maresca is a gamble but there is reason for optimism.

As a Leicester fan, it's easy to see why Chelsea have swooped in and snatched the Italian. His football is brilliant to watch and there's the obvious connection to Pep Guardiola. He will go far, if he is backed and given time to do the job.

He has a squad good enough to win at Chelsea and with a few more additions, you never know.

Tom Coley - Central audience writer

Good luck Enzo Maresca. You'll need it.

There is good reason that he was a surprise name to many when finally emerging as not only a candidate to replace Pochettino, but actually the favourite. This is not the sort of manager Chelsea look at.

With one full season of senior experience in charge there is not much to go off. If Chelsea can get closer to matching the results of Leicester between August and January last season then Maresca will have done a great job, but whether this is something he is actually capable of or not is another question.

Maresca has nice ideas but in management you need more than that. He will have to get the Chelsea fans onside, win over a group of players that continue to undergo unprecedented amounts of change, and doing all of this under trigger-happy sporting directors.

It will be his first taste of top-flight football as a manager as well, just another thing adding to the uncertainty of how this might go. It will certainly be a tough task for him to be any better in terms of a league finish and cup runs than Pochettino.

It is perhaps due to this that there has never been less excitement around an appointment at Stamford Bridge - not in recent memory anyway. Maresca has a lot to prove and not much time to do it in, plus without the ideal circumstances around him as well.

Yes, good luck indeed Maresca. You really will need it.