Chris Sutton has warned fans that it is ‘difficult to see’ the club ‘challenging at the top of the table’ under next season.
Chelsea are expected to formally announce the arrival of Pochettino imminently with the former boss.
Micah Richards under their new head coach next term.
But Sutton is not convinced following Chelsea’s ’embarrassing’ 2022-23 campaign, which sees them finish in the bottom half of the Premier League table despite spending over £600m on players since the summer under co-owner Todd Boehly.
‘What can you say about Frank [Lampard]? Nine games, seven losses and they are below Crystal Palace in the table,’ former Chelsea striker Sutton told the BBC.
‘It has been an embarrassing season and they haven’t gelled under him. Now it’s about what happens next season and can a new manager get them together.
‘It’s difficult, even under Mauricio Pochettino, to see them challenging at the top of the table.’
Michael Owen, meanwhile, , although he admits they must trim down the size of their squad.
Speaking after Chelsea’s 1-0 defeat to Manchester City on Sunday, Owen told Premier League Productions: ‘I think they will [finish in the top four next season].
‘The most important thing at that club is to get rid of players. You can never, ever have a squad of that much quality and have harmony.
‘You’re constantly draining all your energy trying to keep 30 players happy.
‘I think the main thing now is to get rid of half a dozen players, focus on a smaller pool, and I think they will do alright next season.
‘It’s easier said than done… there’s some that will naturally go – whether that be due to age, not being good enough or coming up to the end of their contract.’