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Mauricio Pochettino reveals how Wolves loss nearly cost him Chelsea job

Mauricio Pochettino feared he was close to being sacked during the 'lonely' moments after Chelsea's 4-2 home defeat to Wolves in February, leaving his rebuild in tatters.

The Argentinian saw his team booed off by fans amid possibly the most hostile atmosphere witnessed at Stamford Bridge since Todd Boehly's Clearlake Capital consortium acquired the club nearly two years ago, with a vocal section of the home support directing their anger toward the manager after the team capitulated to Gary O'Neil's side.

It was a seventh defeat in 14 Premier League games which left the Blues 11th in the table, with the ease with which the visitors overran Pochettino's young side, despite Cole Palmer having given them a first-half lead, drawing the wrath of supporters.

The manner of the defeat was of particular concern. Wolves, for whom Matheus Cunha netted a hat-trick, looked sharper, fitter and more committed than Chelsea, despite more than £1billion invested in the squad by Boehly, and as the players left the pitch to a volley of jeers the manager's future looked in grave doubt.

Asked if he had ever believed he was about to be dismissed, the 52-year-old replied: "I think after Wolves.

"Remember what happened after also," he added, a reference to a tweet from Thiago Silva's wife Bella that appeared to call for his removal.

"It was a tough moment that defeat at home. In this moment, when you are a coaching staff you feel the loneliness.

"You feel like everyone is seeing you like you're guilty of something that you don't know.

"We felt the loneliness. We were alone after the game, waiting. I think we spent two hours (in the stadium). That was the longest time after a game that we were there, looking between us in a very small room.

"We were more sad than thinking we would be sacked. It was an unfair situation. It was a situation we didn't deserve."

Pochettino was without eight injured first-team players that day, a recurring theme throughout his first season in charge.

Yet what has been at times a turbulent campaign looks set to finish on a high, with a point against Bournemouth on Sunday all that is required to secure a sixth-place finish and, pending the outcome of the FA Cup final on May 25, possibly secure a Europa League berth.

It comes after four consecutive victories that have injected optimism that the manager is, after a tough start, getting the best out of his fledgling squad.

It is a far cry from the cloud that hung over the club back in February. Asked whether he could see a way out after the Wolves debacle, Pochettino replied: "Not really. The problem was the circumstances (with injuries). They were really, really bad."

Still, he hinted he would not be satisfied merely with guiding the club into Europe's secondary competition.

"It's not enough for us," he said. "We are not going to celebrate. We are not going to take a picture to celebrate being in fifth or sixth. It's not enough for the club."

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