Soccer-Good for Chelsea owners to enter dressing room after games, says Pochettino

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Chelsea v Aston Villa - Stamford Bridge, London, Britain - September 24, 2023 Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino reacts REUTERS/David Klein/File Photo

(Reuters) - Co-owners Behdad Eghbali and Todd Boehly are welcome in Chelsea's dressing room after matches, manager Mauricio Pochettino said on Tuesday ahead of their League Cup clash with Brighton & Hove Albion.

Chelsea, who are 14th in the Premier League with five points from six games, have struggled since their change in ownership last year and recorded their lowest league finish since 1994 last season.

Following their 1-0 home defeat by Aston Villa on Sunday, British media reported that co-controlling owner Eghbali had entered the club's dressing room.

Last season, co-owner Boehly also attracted criticism for entering the dressing room after a Chelsea loss.

"I like when the owner comes (into the dressing room). I think it is good that the owner comes into the dressing room. It is the way that they approach the players that is most important," Pochettino told reporters ahead of Wednesday's game at Stamford Bridge.

"If they are in a good way and an encouraging way then I think they are very welcome... I don't see it in a bad way. For me it is good always if they share with us (the coaching staff) then can say hello to the players.

"The difference is if they came for some speech or different things, then maybe that is different. In the way they came, of course they are very welcome. They own the club, they can do whatever they want."

Pochettino called on his side to lift the mood at Stamford Bridge with a strong showing in the League Cup, adding: "It is one of our objectives in this season. We need to think this is one opportunity to win a trophy.

"Maybe the feelings after the defeat on Sunday are not the best but I feel it is about to move on to get the players the confidence and the trust.

"It is a different competition and we need to change our mood. Yesterday and today we were talking a lot - trying to breathe more confidence into the team - and I think we are going to be ready for tomorrow."

The Argentine manager also confirmed the departure of Bruno Saltor from Chelsea's coaching set-up.

Saltor, who joined Chelsea along with former manager Graham Potter last season, took charge of the club for one game after Potter's sacking before then becoming part of Frank Lampard and Pochettino's coaching staff.

"It was a decision between the club and Bruno," Pochettino said. "He didn't belong to my coaching staff and then it's the best decision for him and for the club."

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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