Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino has hailed Aston Villa boss Unai Emery as ‘one of the best coaches in the world’.
Chelsea host Aston Villa in the FA Cup fourth round on Friday evening, as the Blues look to build on an impressive 6-1 win over Middlesbrough in midweek.
The West Londoners thrashed the Championship side to reach the Carabao Cup final and Chelsea are now targeting progress in another cup competition.
However, Pochettino is braced for a difficult tie against an Aston Villa team who are in the Premier League’s top four and who beat Chelsea 1-0 at Stamford Bridge earlier in the campaign.
Pochettino has praised Villa’s progress this season and hailed the club’s head coach Unai Emery as one of the best in the business.
“They haven’t surprised me,” Pochettino told his pre-match press conference on Aston Villa.
“First of all I think Unai Emery is one of the best coaches in the world. He is creating and building a very good organisation at Aston Villa. They have amazing players.
“I’m so happy for him and the people involved in this project.”
Pochettino has the chance to win silverware at Chelsea next month when his team take on Liverpool in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley.
On facing the Reds, Pochettino said: “We are going to find a very solid and consistent team. Going to be a tough opponent. It’s going to be a massive challenge for us.
“It’s going to be good to face Liverpool. It’s going to be tough but a great final.”