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Man City v Chelsea: Blues ‘not capable’ of scoring goals in FA Cup defeat, says Pochettino

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Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino has criticised his players’ finishing and their defending for the decisive goal in their FA Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester City.

Pochettino’s side had five of the eight attempts on goal between the teams, with Nicolas Jackson spurning several good chances before Bernardo Silva struck the only goal with six minutes remaining.

“We conceded in a moment when you should not concede,” Pochettino told BBC Sport, adding that it was “so easy to explain” why they had lost.

“We were not capable of being clinical in front of goal. We had many chances but we did not score.

“We were a little bit better and deserved more. But it is not about deserving it; it is about being clinical and we were not.”

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Chelsea will perhaps never have a better chance to beat City at Wembley, facing opponents who failed to produce a shot on target during the first half in the absence of top scorer Erling Haaland.

The Blues also showed a lack of cutting edge when they lost the Carabao Cup final to a considerably depleted Liverpool side in February.

Chelsea FA Cup defeat ‘wasn’t easy’

Pochettino pointed out that Chelsea won 6-0 at home to Everton in the Premier League on Monday.

“But today we were not capable of scoring, even with having maybe more chances and more clear chances to score,” he added.

“We were playing a very good team in Manchester City. It wasn’t easy but we were capable of playing a very good game, competing really well.

“We want to build on this. Sometimes you have these sorts of games on your journey and the important thing is to take the positives from it.”

Ninth in the Premier League with games in hand on the teams above them, Chelsea have mounted a late charge for qualification for European football but have a difficult-looking immediate set of fixtures.

They visit title challengers Arsenal on Tuesday, fourth-placed Aston Villa – 2-0 winners at Arsenal last Sunday – four days later and host fifth-placed Tottenham the following Thursday.

“There are not too many games to recover and it is going to be another tough game,” Pochettino said of the trip to Emirates Stadium.

“We need to try to win more league games and get close to the position of being in Europe.”

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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