Gary Neville urges Chelsea to make three signings for Mauricio Pochettino | Football

Gary Neville insists Chelsea should keep Mauricio Pochettino (Sky Sports)

Gary Neville has urged Chelsea not to sack Mauricio Pochettino and believes three new signings will be key for the club this summer.

Pochettino has come under fire following an inconsistent first season at Chelsea, who currently sit ninth in the Premier League and 19 points fourth-placed Aston Villa.

Nicolas Jackson has also received heavy criticism for his performances for Chelsea this term, with the 22-year-old, who has scored 13 goals in all competitions this season, guilty of missing several clear-cut chances, most notably in the FA Cup semi-final defeat to Manchester City earlier this month.

But Neville has defended Jackson’s debut campaign at Chelsea and believes the club need to sign a new striker, goalkeeper and central defender to replace Thiago Silva in order to help the team’s progression under Pochettino.

‘I actually like Nicolas Jackson, might be an unpopular opinion on here, but I like him,’ said Neville on Sky Sports’ The Gary Neville Podcast.

‘I think he has a lot to give, he’s a young player. I think he’s not cost stupid money but it’s his first full season in the Premier League, he’s scored quite a few goals and he keeps going. There’s a lot to be said for that.

Nicolas Jackson of Chelsea and Matty Cash of Aston Villa battle for possession during the Premier League match between Aston Villa and Chelsea

Gary Neville has been impressed with Nicolas Jackson’s first season at Chelsea (Getty)

‘He might not be striker number one but if he was your striker number two or number three in a squad of 18 to 20, you’ll say, ‘I’ll take that’. So for me, the performance Chelsea put in against Manchester City in the FA Cup semi-final that was a hell of a performance. Good, really good.

‘And if they had a forward who could finish more consistently than Nicolas Jackson then they would have obviously won the game, and I think that’s what Chelsea’s owners should be looking at. Performance standards are not consistent, they’re awful when they’re awful, but actually their good looks quite exciting and you can see something.

‘But they need those two or three players to glue it together. They need really good, experienced signings. They can’t afford to go down the route of eight-year contracts.

‘Eight-year contracts are bad in many ways, one because I just don’t think they make sense but they’re actually not good for a young player.

‘The money is big as well, if you think you’ve got an eight-year contract as a 21, 22-year-old, the club might think they’re got security over you, but the player thinks, ‘I’m rich’. And for some that’s a problem, it just affects the mindset.

‘If they can get those right three players in at the start of the season – the striker, the centre-back to replace Thiago Silva and the goalkeeper, I think, as well, those three positions come in.’

Mauricio Pochettino is under pressure to keep his job at Chelsea after an inconsistent season (Getty)

When asked if he believes Pochettino deserves more time at Chelsea, Neville replied: ‘Definitely, I think he’s absolutely the right man to work with young players.

‘We’ve seen what we he did at Southampton, bringing players through, developing them. We saw what he did here [at Tottenham] with players.

‘It’s interesting, he came up with a really good statement the other night after the Arsenal game, ‘when we’re bad we’re really bad’, I mean, they are shocking when they’re bad. But do you know something – their good is good, and you can see the clear deficiencies obviously at both ends of the pitch, particularly at the top end of the pitch.

‘I wouldn’t mess with Mauricio Pochettino at all, I think Mauricio Pochettino definitely deserves another transfer window, I think he definitely deserves the idea of completing the jigsaw of the three positions everyone knows are missing.

‘I think when he’s got those three players in, maybe four because you need two strikers, I think at that point then we’ll judge Mauricio Pochettino. I think it’s far too early and the reason I say that is I think their performance levels, at times, are very, very good. They hit a good level.’

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