HomeFootball NewsChelsea v Everton: Pochettino gives players final warning over 'really sad' Palmer...

Chelsea v Everton: Pochettino gives players final warning over ‘really sad’ Palmer penalty row

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Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino says he has told his squad that he is “not going to accept” any more arguments about which players take penalties, describing an altercation during his side’s 6-0 win over Everton as “really sad”.

Designated penalty taker Cole Palmer, who had scored a first-half hat-trick, stepped up to take the 64th-minute penalty at Stamford Bridge, only for Nicolas Jackson and Noni Madueke to appear to protest with the midfielder because they wanted the responsibility.

Palmer pushed Madueke before placing the ball down and scoring, with captain Conor Gallagher stepping in to attempt to end the incident.

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“It’s a shame,” Pochettino told Sky Sports. “I was telling the players before… we had a meeting with all the staff and explained, we were talking.

“We cannot behave in this way. I told them this is the last time I will accept this type of behaviour.

“It is impossible after a game like this. It shows we are in a process and we have to learn a lot and think in a collective way if we are to challenge for big things.”

Chelsea penalty taker: Palmer ‘clear’

Pochettino said he wanted to make it “clear” to “the fans and everyone” that Palmer was assigned penalties and it was up to the top scorer if he decided to hand the ball over.

“It is a really, really sad situation,” said Pochettino, whose players also confronted each other over penalties when Chelsea won home games against Leicester City and Manchester United in March. “I’m not going to accept it again.”

Chelsea are three points behind sixth-placed Newcastle with a game in hand, Palmer having scored more than half of their Premier League goals since signing in September.

The huge-spenders have had an underwhelming season but a more positive run of recent results have put them firmly in the running to qualify for European football.

“Maybe we have too many young players and need experience – or not,” Pochettino said when he was asked if naivety had contributed to the row.

“I am happy with the project. I’ve tried to explain the different possibilities that can happen in the future. The most important thing now is to build a team that is consistent, to win games and be solid in performances.”

Ben Miller
Ben Miller
Ben has more than 10 years' experience in sports journalism, covering two EURO tournaments, European club competitions, the Premier League, EFL and WSL and a variety of other major sporting events.

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