The one MAJOR promise from Maresca that earned him the Chelsea job

Martin Macdonald
Martin Macdonald
  • Updated: 28 May 2024 05:13 CDT
  • 4 min read
Enzo Maresca, Chelsea, Leicester, 2023/24

Chelsea will officially appoint Enzo Maresca as their new boss this week, but how did a coach with just one full season as a manager in England earn the opportunity to take the reins at Stamford Bridge?

Following the final day of the season, Mauricio Pochettino was sacked as Chelsea manager after just one campaign in charge after a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League.

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It was a surprise decision for many fans as well as a lot of the players, as the Blues had found a decent run of forward towards the end of the campaign, though results like the 5-0 demolition at the hands of Arsenal did not help Pochettino's plight.

READ MORE: Who is Kiano Dyer? Chelsea's latest Cobham wonderkid

Four names eventually emerged as potential replacements - Maresca, Roberto De Zerbi, Kieran McKenna and Thomas Frank.

An official announcement hasn't come yet, but Maresca has the job and he'll be confirmed soon.

Enzo Maresca will leave Leicester City after one season
© IMAGO - Enzo Maresca will leave Leicester City after one season

Who is Enzo Maresca?

Maresca is currently the manager of Leicester and led the Foxes to the top spot in the Championship in his first season in charge.

His first senior managerial role was at Parma in Serie B where he failed to achieve promotion, which resulted in his dismissal in November of 2021. In his career, he has acted as an assistant to Pep Guardiola at Manchester City and Manuel Pellegrini at West Ham.

It was his stint alongside Guardiola that helped him forge his reputation as a forward-thinking coach as he also guided Man City reserves to a Premier League 2 championship in 2021.

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Crucially, he worked alongside Chelsea recruitment director Joe Shields at Manchester City, and Shields championed his appointment.

As a player, he had a nomadic career and played for no less than 11 clubs, most notably West Brom, Juventus, Sevilla and Palermo.

Maresca's promise to Chelsea

According to the Standard, Maresca impressed the Chelsea hierarchy with his plans for the club, most notably how to properly utilise Enzo Fernandez, a favourite of owner Todd Boehly. Fernandez's form was up and down in 2023/24, but Maresca believes he has the right formula to get the best out of the Argentine and is prepared to mould the team around the player.

Enzo Fernandez has had a mixed time at Chelsea
© IMAGO - Enzo Fernandez has had a mixed time at Chelsea

Furthermore, Chelsea are impressed by Maresca's approach to playing the game and believes it matches the talent available to him at Stamford Bridge. He likes to play in either a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 formation which is what the club deployed this past season under Pochettino.

He likes his full-backs inverted, so the likes of Reece James and Ben Chilwell may see their roles change slightly if fit and available.

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