TWO Premier League managers are heading for difficult conversations this summer, claims Sami Mokbel on It's All Kicking Off... as Ian Ladyman claims one team 'look like they're drifting!'

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There are two high-profile Premier league managers staring down the barrel of a tough conversation this summer after under-whelming seasons, Mail Sport's Sami Mokbel told It's All Kicking Off. 

While only two managers have yet lost their jobs in the top-flight, in Steve Cooper and Paul Heckingbottom, there have been several teams falling somewhat short of pre-season expectations. 

As a result there has been mounting pressure at both ends of the table as we approach the final stretch of the campaign.

As such, Mail Sport's Chief Football Reporter highlighted two such managers headed for difficult discussion at the end of the campaign if results continue to play out as they have been.

Both managers are at clubs you would expect to be fighting for the Champions League spaces - and have also spent heavily in recent years but are yet to mount a credible threat to the top four this term. 

Sami Mokbel believes there are two Premier League managers heading for difficult conversations this summer

Sami Mokbel believes there are two Premier League managers heading for difficult conversations this summer

Steve Cooper is one of just two managers to have been sacked this season

Sami Mokbel believes there are two Premier League managers heading for difficult conversations this summer

The first of those two bosses is Mauricio Pochettino at Chelsea, who may have only joined last summer, but speculation is already swirling around his future. 

Mail Sport's Football Editor Ian Ladyman suggested that his side 'look like they're drifting' this season, sat in 10th place after a 4-1 defeat to Liverpool on Wednesday. 

Although they are in the Carabao Cup final - where they will face Liverpool in a replay of the 2022 edition - it has been a desperately below-par campaign for the Stamford Bridge outfit.  

The Blues' huge spending in recent windows has been well-documented, and for the club to still be under-performing perhaps places pressure on Pochettino's shoulders, and Mokbel reports that the Argentine is set for a 'difficult conversation'. 

'There are conversations to be had, and the indicators now are that it will be a difficult conversation - not just for Pochettino, but for those in charge at Chelsea as well,' said Mokbel on It's All Kicking Off.

'They are invested in the appointment, but the season hasn't gone the way that they thought and expected it would. 

'The biggest factor will be if they can qualify for European football, because there are advantages that come with that. 

'There is the financial advantages but also prestige, because for Chelsea - who have won the Champions League twice - to not be playing in Europe two years on the bounce is embarrassing for them, for want of a better word.

Mail Sport's Ian Ladyman claimed that Chelsea look like a team 'drifting' this campaign

Mail Sport's Ian Ladyman claimed that Chelsea look like a team 'drifting' this campaign

Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea side are down in 10th place despite spending heavily once again in summer

Mauricio Pochettino's Chelsea side are down in 10th place despite spending heavily once again in summer

Mokbel argued that without European qualification it will be hard for Chelsea to stick with Pochettino

Mokbel argued that without European qualification it will be hard for Chelsea to stick with Pochettino

'There's still a long way to go, they've got a cup final coming up against Liverpool, so there are still ways that they can make this season a success, but information and experience tell me there is a tough conversation to be had.'

He added: 'I think it's tough to remain in charge if they don't qualify for Europe at the very least. I know that qualification for European football is one of the considerations going into those conversations.' 

But it isn't just Pochettino that could be facing the music this summer, with rival Erik ten Hag also enduring a rough season in 2023-24. 

Manchester United have recently seen Sir Jim Ratcliffe purchase a 25 per cent stake in the club, and Mokbel pointed out that most chiefs tend to appoint their own people on taking over. 

Ratcliffe has already spoken to Ten Hag at Man United, with the club going through a tricky campaign in which they have lost as many games as they have won. 

After seemingly looking like at last returning to a shadow of their former selves, United have taken a huge step back this season. 

As well as on-pitch struggles there have also been a number of disciplinary issues that have brought Ten Hag's leadership into the spotlight as a result. 

As such, Mokbel was quick to point out that the Dutchman and his team 'know' a further conversation is coming at the end of the season - and added that it would not be a surprise if it ended in Ten Hag's removal. 

Erik ten Hag's future is also subject of speculation with the Red Devils underperforming in all competitions

Erik ten Hag's future is also subject of speculation with the Red Devils underperforming in all competitions

Sir Jim Ratcliffe (left) completed a 25 per cent purchase of United earlier this season and takes over football operations at Old Trafford

Sir Jim Ratcliffe (left) completed a 25 per cent purchase of United earlier this season and takes over football operations at Old Trafford

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'That conversation is coming,' he said. 'Ten Hag and his backroom team know that it's coming if the season continues in the direction it's going in at the moment.

'It wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if it's a conversation that ends in "Thanks for your time, Erik ten Hag, but here's the door".

'There is a ready made excuse for them to say "we appreciate what you've done but we want to go in a different direction. You're languishing seventh or eighth in the table, crashed out of the Champions League in the group stages and the performances just haven't merited you staying on".

'There's time to change that for Erik Ten Hag - they could gatecrash the top four and maybe that's enough to save him from that conversation - but the way things are going, that conversation will be had with Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sir Dave Brailsford.' 

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