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Why Ruben Amorim should turn down Liverpool for basket-case Chelsea

Why Ruben Amorim should turn down Liverpool for basket-case Chelsea

Having been told where to go by Xabi Alonso, Liverpool have made Sporting Lisbon boss Ruben Amorim their top choice to replace Jurgen Klopp at Anfield this summer, but another Premier League job could also be in the offing for a man in demand.

Reports claim Todd Boehly and Clearlake want to stick by Mauricio Pochettino despite Chelsea’s ludicrously mercurial results, but Amorim is a manager high on their succession planning shortlist, deemed the ‘ideal’ replacement should they swing the axe on the incumbent. 

Chelsea may well be too late as Liverpool have reportedly agreed a deal in principle, but the Portuguese boss could always turn them down, and we’ve come up with five reasons why he should snub the Reds and wait for a job at the Premier League’s basket-case football club. 

Following Pochettino, not Klopp
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is proof that it’s better to follow the follower, while we’re yet to find out how many followers down the line it will take to source the right replacement for Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United. Number five is yet to scratch that itch, and the odds are number six won’t either.

Xabi Alonso is smart enough not to be the next man up after Mr Liverpool, knowing – as we all do – that he’s very unlikely to top what Jurgen Klopp has achieved. We don’t just mean the trophies, though five major gongs in a nine-year reign with Manchester City and Pep Guardiola for company shouldn’t be sniffed at, but also the extraordinary bond he’s built with the players, staff, fans and (we can feel the tiniest bit of sick in the back of our throats here) the city.

Whether you believe This Means More or not he’s managed to hoodwink everyone with a stake in the club to believe that it actually does. He was the perfect manager for Liverpool; there’s no one – not Guardiola, Ancelotti or anyone else – who could have done as good a job at Anfield. Following him is a fool’s errand.

Conversely, the only way is up at Chelsea. Currently ninth, with each passing draw against teams doomed for the drop casting further doubt as to whether there will be any European football for a second successive season, the fans have firmly taken against Mauricio Pochettino, and according to reports, so too have some of the players.

It’s a difficult job, there’s no doubt about that, but any manager worth their salt will look at that group of players and think they can get a better tune out of them than either Pochettino or Graham Potter.

READ MORE: Mourinho second favourite to replace Pochettino at Chelsea as viral video ‘sparks frenzy’

Chelsea fans vs Todd Boehly
At some point, as was the case at Manchester United under the Glazers, a club’s fans become convinced that the owners are to blame rather than the manager.

To some extent – thanks to Todd Boehly’s multifarious mistakes in his short time at the helm – this has already happened at Chelsea, but in Pochettino they hired a manager the supporters were waiting to fail owing to his Tottenham links, who is also only the second permanent manager signed by the Clearlake consortium.

It’s not just the quality of failing managers but the number of them that causes the fans to point the finger of blame elsewhere. Potter and Pochettino might both be rubbish, but Potter, Pochettino and Amorim? Surely not.

The growing feeling – which is already causing the less trigger-happy fans to suggest Poch shouldn’t be sacked – that eventually some manager or other has to be given time to put their stamp on things also plays into the hands of Amorim, who will get further credit having hailed from Portugal – home of Chelsea’s greatest ever manager – from fans who have successfully scrubbed Andre Villas-Boas from their memories.

📣Straight to the comments! ‘tbf all five points are actually very valid’ – At The Bridge Pod. Respond here.

Replacing Van Dijk and Salah
Both are out of contract at the end of the 2025 season, meaning they’ll likely either sign extensions this summer or be sold. In any case, at some stage – assuming Amorim lasts long enough – he will have to find replacements for Liverpool’s best centre-back and best goalscorer in the Premier League era.

The good news for Amorim is the man who signed them – Michael Edwards – is back at Liverpool. The bad news is, and we know neither Van Dijk nor Salah were considered to be world-beaters when they joined, we can’t imagine CEO of football Edwards or sporting director Richard Hughes sourcing players anywhere near their level for the sort of sums they’re likely to be able to spend, if indeed those players even exist.

An added difficulty in the transfer market will be the inevitable reduced allure at a football club in transition and without Klopp, who is consistently cited by new recruits as key to them joining, whereas Chelsea signings – to a man – have been convinced by ‘the project’, even after a first season under the new owners that saw them finish 12th in the Premier League and with no European football.

Van Dijk Salah Liverpool

Virgil van Dijk and Mohamed Salah are going to be very difficult to replace at Liverpool.

Easy transfer fixes at Chelsea
After a £1bn spend, Pochettino’s comments on the back of Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Sheffield United on Sunday drew short shrift from some.

“Always when the end of the season arrives,” he said. “We need to analyse the squad and what we are missing to try to add people with the capacity to provide what we are seeing today, to improve in the next seasons.”

You can think he should be getting more out of his current players without dismissing what should be obvious to everyone watching Chelsea games: incredibly, they do need more players.

A goalkeeper and a centre-back for sure, probably another centre-back, a left-back, a guaranteed goalscorer and another winger. That’s before you consider replacements for the stomach-churning pure profit sales they’ll likely be forced into to comply with FFP.

It’s a mess, but arguably quite an appealing one for Amorim, who hopefully wouldn’t need to convince the owners after this season that some experience might be of benefit, and can supplement a squad that has significant, as yet unrealised, potential.

READ MORE: Chelsea stars reassigned after FFP ‘expulsion’: Mudryk to Arsenal as Liverpool land trio

Cole Palmer
A shining light in the darkness at Stamford Bridge, any manager would love to work with a 21-year-old who’s proven he can carry the entire creative burden of a team on his shoulders. Hopefully he wouldn’t have to be under Amorim, but Palmer has been a cheat code for Chelsea this season, winning games and turning them around on his own.

We’re not going to pretend that Amorim will look at the respective squads and think – even given the age profiles – that he would prefer to work with Chelsea’s than Liverpool’s. But Liverpool don’t have Cole Palmer.

READ MORE: Palmer behind Arsenal man in top 10 Premier League signings of the season but Tottenham dominate

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