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Why Mauricio Pochettino left Chelsea ahead of Soccer Aid Stamford Bridge return

Mauricio Pochettino
-Credit: (Image: Catherine Ivill - AMA/Getty Images)


Mauricio Pochettino will be making his return to Stamford Bridge this weekend, just two weeks after leaving his role as Chelsea manager.

The Argentinian walked away from the club only 11 months into his stint, having secured a sixth-place finish, and in-turn European football, on top of impressive domestic cup competition runs that saw the Blues make two trips to Wembley in the FA Cup semi-final and Carabao Cup final.

In a statement released by the club, they said: "Chelsea FC can confirm that the Club and Mauricio Pochettino have mutually agreed to part ways.

"Jesus Perez, Miguel d’Agostino, Toni Jimenez and Sebastiano Pochettino have left the club with Mauricio. The Club will be making no further comment until such time as a new Head Coach is appointed."

Sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley added: "On behalf of everyone at Chelsea, we would like to express our gratitude to Mauricio for his service this season. He will be welcome back to Stamford Bridge any time and we wish him all the very best in his future coaching career."

At the time, it was believed that Pochettino had made the decision to leave the club following a two-day meeting with club officials as well as co-owners Todd Boehly and Behdad Eghbali in which the limited say he'd have in any future transfers around the club was said to be the breaking point.

READ MORE: Full Soccer Aid lineups as Mauricio Pochettino and Eden Hazard set for Chelsea return

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It came as reports surrounding Chelsea academy graduate, and captain for much of the season, Conor Gallagher highlighted the uncertainty around the 23-year-old's future at Stamford Bridge. The midfielder had arguably his best season in a Blues shirt but could still find himself up for sale due to his 'pure profit' status in relation to the Premier League's Profit and Sustainability (PSR) rules.

Pochettino had been very vocal about wanting Gallagher to stay in the past, but with the 52-year-old now being replaced by Enzo Maresca, it's still unclear whether the England international will be playing for Chelsea after the European Championships this summer.

Ahead of this weekend's Soccer Aid event, in which Pochettino will be managing the World XI for the second consecutive year, he took to Instagram on Tuesday to highlight the support he'd received throughout his time with the club and insists he's looking forward to managing at Stamford Bridge again.

He wrote: "To the owners, the sporting directors we appreciate the opportunity to return to the Premier League at this great club @Chelsea and for the support you gave us, as well as from all the players, staff and fans - thank you.

"We understand how important this football club is to you all and that is why we work so hard to give you a Chelsea you can be proud of. I am so pleased with the level the team reached and the way the players and staff have all worked so hard to increase their standards, they deserve great credit and I hope you felt that too in how they performed on the pitch.

"We know there have been ups and downs but we always believed in this team and that we would arrive at a consistent level. I believe the experiences of this season and big improvement we saw, I hope will only make the players stronger for the future. It has been a pleasure to work with them all and we appreciate the strong bonds we created in this last year together.

"I want to wish all of you the best for next season and beyond. It is great that we have the chance to return to Stamford Bridge so soon with @socceraid this weekend and I hope that we get to see some of you there too. I hope you all get to have a great summer. Big hug from us. MP x".