Mauricio Pochettino leaves Chelsea after one season

Mauricio Pochettino has left Chelsea by mutual consent after one season in charge.

The Argentinian manager, who joined Chelsea in July 2023 after coaching at Paris Saint-Germain and rivals Tottenham Hotspur, had a year left on his two-year contract.

It comes after the west London club secured European football with a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League with a final-day win over Bournemouth on Sunday.

Whether it will be a place in the Europa League or the Europa Conference League depends on the result of Saturday's FA Cup final between Manchester City and Manchester United.

Pochettino endured a difficult start to his Chelsea career, which was plagued by injuries - including to club captain Reece James, vice-captain Ben Chilwell, and star summer signing Christopher Nkunku.

But a turnaround in form in recent months - including winning their last five league games - ensured a European spot for next season.

Sporting directors Laurence Stewart and Paul Winstanley said in a joint statement: "On behalf of everyone at Chelsea, we would like to express our gratitude to Mauricio for his service this season.

"He will be welcome back to Stamford Bridge any time and we wish him all the very best in his future coaching career."

Pochettino said: "Thank you to the Chelsea ownership group and sporting directors for the opportunity to be part of this football club's history.

"The club is now well positioned to keep moving forward in the Premier League and Europe in the years to come."

The club said there would be no further statements until a new manager - their seventh permanent appointment in five years - had been signed.

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In recent weeks, Pochettino hinted at his departure from the club, saying in one press conference that "it would not be the end of the world" if he left.

At a press conference on 11 May, he said: "If we are happy then it's perfect, but it's not only if the owners are happy... because you need to ask us also, because maybe we are not happy, and we need to split.

"It would not be the first time a coaching staff decided to not keep going. Tomorrow I could say I am going to leave."

In the running to replace the Argentinian is Kieran McKenna, the manager of Ipswich Town, who guided the Tractor Boys to the Premier League in back-to-back promotions.

Also rumoured as possible replacements are former Brighton boss Roberto de Zerbi, Leicester City's Enzo Maresca, Stuttgart's Sebastian Hoeness, and Girona boss Michel.