Club at last chance saloon with Maresca

Enzo Maresca likely to bench Abdul Fatawu in next match

In his fortnightly exclusive column for CaughtOffside, Jon Smith, one of football’s first-ever agents and a man who was an integral figure in the forming of the Premier League, discusses why Chelsea are at the last chance saloon with Enzo Maresca, why West Ham will be sold within three years, why VAR won’t be scrapped – and more! 

Chelsea at the last chance saloon with Enzo Maresca

Hiring Enzo Maresca is a really brave decision you have to say from Paul Winstanley, who’s the sporting director at Chelsea, and it’s probably the last chance saloon.

I like Paul, he did a great job at Brighton and he has a highly intellectual footballing brain, but it is definitely a risky proposition.

Having said all of that, the fashionable and loud voices all say that you need young, new, innovative coaches from the Pep school of how to do things in 2024 and that’s where he comes from.

In terms of his managerial ability, he was bit poor at Parma, Leicester fans don’t seem overly upset, which is a slight concern, but when you look at what’s happened at Brighton, and it’s where Paul came from, they pick people out that they’ve done their research on and they’ve worked.

So, being bold and brave might not be the worst thing in the world… fingers crossed.

West Ham’s new set-up a pre-cursor to sale within three years

West Ham, as was over the last couple of years, have got away with their way of working because they didn’t have an obvious striker but they did have a decent coach.

Now it looks as if things will work slightly differently at the club with Tim Steidten driving transfers, and I think it’s a path that they have to tread to become a modern club.

I’ve grown up with a lot of the people running our game and have had good relationships with most of them, and I’m fond of David Sullivan who has been very kind to me.

I’ve watched him operate and he’s bloody good at what he does – but he’s in his 70s. He’s not ill at all, but he’s had medical issues and I just feel that he’s possibly setting the club up for the future.

When you look around the corner, the David Gold shareholding that’s for sale… the price has gone up and up and up, and the obvious taker was originally Daniel Kretinsky but he’s gone and bought the Post Office now, so he’s obviously not going to buy West Ham at the same time.

He’s still a major shareholder, however, so put all those computations together, and you get a club that needs to set itself up for a…

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