“Everyone is looking for the next Mikel Arteta” - Ex-PL midfielder questions Chelsea’s appointment of Enzo Maresca 

Hull City v Leicester City - Sky Bet Championship
Enzo Maresca's credentials to coach Chelsea have been questioned.

Darren Ambrose has raised doubts about incoming Chelsea manager Enzo Maresca by suggesting the Blues are eager to find their own Mikel Arteta.

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano reports that the west Londoners will appoint Maresca on a five-year deal. The Italian coach leaves Leicester City who he guided back to the Premier League at the first time of asking, winning the EFL Championship with 97 points.

Former Crystal Palace midfielder Ambrose has questioned Chelsea's move for Maresca by alluding to his time working with Pep Guardiola. He was part of the Spaniard's coaching staff at Manchester City for just under a year.

Ambrose warned the Stamford Bridge faithful that they'll need to be patient (via English journalist Simon Phillips):

"I just think they’re hoping he’s learned off Pep - everyone is looking for the next Mikel Arteta. I know some Leicester supporters, they won the Championship and were still criticizing the way they play. They pass you to death, this Leicester team, they pass everyone off the pitch, but it’s a bit boring. I don't think that’s what Chelsea are looking for."

Maresca oversaw 36 wins in 53 games after taking over at Leicester last summer. He's previously worked as an assistant coach at City, West Ham United and Parma.

The 44-year-old replaces Mauricio Pochettino who parted ways with Chelsea last week. There is an air of Arteta about the appointment given the Spaniard was also early into his coaching career when he left City for Arsenal.


Mikel Arteta hailed Mauricio Pochettino as the ideal role model before his Chelsea exit

Mauricio Pochettino left the Blues amicably.
Mauricio Pochettino left the Blues amicably.

Pochettino's departure took many by surprise given he led Chelsea to a sixth-placed finish which initially meant Europa League football. It was a vast improvement from their 12th-placed finish the previous season.

The Argentine was a popular figure at Stamford Bridge including with the squad who sent farewell messages on social media. He oversaw 27 wins in 51 games and took the Blues to the Carabao Cup final, losing 1-0 to Liverpool (a.e.t).

Arteta collided with Pochettino in April and his Arsenal side thrashed their London rivals 5-0 at the Emirates. The Gunners boss still highlighted his respect for the former Tottenham Hotspur coach.

The former City assistant revealed how he asked Pochettino for advice before joining the Gunners (via Evening Standard):

"When I had to make a decision I asked him and explained the situation and he gave me some advice and he was needed... As a role model I can’t pick anyone better."

Pochettino lasted just under a year at Chelsea and is now available with speculation growing over his next destination. Manchester United have been linked amid uncertainty over Erik ten Hag's future but an FA Cup triumph may see him remain at Old Trafford.

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