Chelsea winger Raheem Sterling
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Pochettino condemns Chelsea boos for Raheem Sterling

Mauricio Pochettino has condemned the boos from the Chelsea crowd for Raheem Sterling during the club’s 4-2 win over Leicester in the FA Cup quarter-finals.

Chelsea progressed to the semi-finals of the FA Cup with a hard-fought win over the Championship leaders, though a positive afternoon for the Blues was marred by a negative reaction to Sterling’s performance.

 

The England international missed a first-half penalty after taking the spot-kick from first-choice taker Cole Palmer and endured a difficult afternoon, also blazing a one-against-one wide of the target.

Sterling was subjected to boos from sections of the home crowd after a wild off-target effort from a free-kick, and again upon his late substitution at Stamford Bridge.

Pochettino addressed the reaction from the home fans and called on the Chelsea crowd to support – and not criticise – his team.

“We need to support him, he’s an amazing player,” Pochettino said to BBC One.

“He has more than 10 years experience in the Premier League. Of course I think the contribution was good. He was a little bit unlucky with some actions where he should have scored. But we are a team and we need to be there for everyone.

“Fans are entitled to show their emotion. For us we try to emphasise with our fans not to criticise. They want the best for our team and players. But we are in a project. We need support and to really believe. We are trying to build something.

“We are in a process to build the team. I know really well how to manage. What the fans want is to win the game and that we achieved. What the fans want is to go to Wembley and that we achieved. They need to trust me to manage in the way I think is the best way for the club.

“We need to respect their opinion as much as they need to respect my decision.”

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