Pochettino believes Chelsea are 'building something'
Noni Madueke’s sensational international displays with England U21s are set to give Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino a fresh headache over the coming weeks. The winger was publicly called out by Pochettino in September after a video of him partying emerged but will now hope to have won his manager back over.
Madueke has had his game time limited by the Argentine but could finally earn the trust of his head coach by scoring three times during the international break. The 21-year-old scored twice for the Young Lions in their 9-1 thrashing of Serbia last week and on Monday he scored with a fantastic strike in a defeat by Ukraine.
A bloated squad, injuries and inconsistent form have all contributed to Pochettino struggling to pick a preferred starting 11 this season. Madueke has played just 43 minutes in the Premier League and has had to watch on while summer signing Cole Palmer impresses on the right of Chelsea’s attack.
However, Pochettino now has a major headache with two of his right-wingers now in fantastic form. It will be a welcome problem and feel like major progress after his side suffered a dismal start to the top-flight season.
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Two goals in the thrashing of Serbia were followed by a prototype Madueke strike against Ukraine. In his trademark style, the former PSV ace cut inside and found the top corner. It was not enough for England, whose comeback to 2-2 was ruined by a stoppage-time winner by their Ukrainian counterparts.
But it was the best possible riposte from Madueke to criticism by Pochettino last month. The 51-year-old admonished the January signing after he was spotted partying. “It is clear. This video, we were talking about that with him. I think it is a thing that we need to avoid,” Pochettino said.
“All the players need to know that when we are a player of Chelsea to try to avoid these things. It wasn’t a big issue but we always need to avoid these types of situations.
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“I think it is really clear that he needs to avoid it. But he is recovering from the national team and we will see if he is fit and can be involved and selected.
“But we talk about what you are asking me because it is a thing that the young players need to improve on. Not only him. Many, many players need to be professional and to have respect because of the badge we have here.”
Madueke will hope that his improved form can help him to win over Pochettino. The Chelsea boss will surely be delighted to welcome back a star performing well for their country.
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