• Premier League

Poyet backed for Chelsea job

ESPN staff
March 11, 2013
Poyet remains philosophical

Ray Wilkins has backed Guy Poyet to become the next manager of Chelsea, with the post set to be vacant in the summer.

Stamford Bridge legend Wilkins, who had successful spells as a player and coach with the west London club, believes the Uruguayan currently in charge of Championship side Brighton has what it takes to succeed in one of football's toughest jobs.

Wilkins is convinced Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich will not bring bookmakers' favourite Jose Mourinho back to Stamford Bridge this summer, as he suspects the Real Madrid boss already has his eyes on another prestigious Premier League posting.

"I think Jose will be the next manager of Manchester United, so I would give the Chelsea job to someone like Gus Poyet," Wilkins told talkSPORT. "He has served his apprenticeship at Swindon and Leeds and has Brighton playing some wonderful football.

"Knowing the way they employ managers at Chelsea, I would expect them to go for a foreign manager. Manuel Pellegrini at Malaga, Diego Simeone at Atletico Madrid? Both could be interesting.

"Gianfranco Zola has been mentioned, but I'm not sure whether it would be a little soon for Franco, so I would look at Poyet. He loves the club to pieces, plays in the right manner and would be a good choice."

Wilkins went on to suggest the ongoing woes of £50 million striker Fernando Torres are unlikely to be resolved at Chelsea, as the style of play employed by the reigning European champions does not suit the misfiring Spanish striker.

"When he played at Liverpool, they played the ball beyond defenders for Fernando and he used his pace to get himself clear and gets shots on goal, but Chelsea's build-up play is so much more deliberate," he said.

"Often when he receives the ball at Chelsea, he is surrounded by plenty of players. Maybe his feet are not good enough, maybe he is not good enough to play with his back to goal compared to the likes of a (Didier) Drogba or someone like that. It's a shame to see the way it has gone for him at Chelsea."

Meanwhile, Wilkins has questioned the decision of interim Chelsea boss Rafael Benitez to continually omit club captain John Terry from his starting line-up, and he is urging the Spanish tactician to re-install the Stamford Bridge legend in place of Brazilian David Luiz.

"I am a big John Terry fan and having seen David Luiz playing in midfield, I am even more convinced he is better suited to that position," he added.

"When I saw the second Manchester United goal going in on Sunday, I thought there is only one person who could have headed that away and that was John Terry. I don't see how you can leave him out of the big games. If he is on the bench, he must be fit to play."

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