Stock futures rise after GOP and White House reach tentative U.S. debt ceiling deal: Live updates

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President Joe Biden (l.) and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy

Drew Angerer | Getty Images News | Getty Images

Stock futures rose Monday night after the Biden administration and Republican lawmakers reached a tentative deal on raising the U.S. debt ceiling.

Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 72 points, or 0.2%, while S&P 500 futures gained 0.3%. Nasdaq-100 futures climbed 0.5%.

President Joe Biden and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy reached an agreement to raise the debt ceiling and avoid default over the weekend, with Congress set to vote on the legislation as early as Wednesday. Lawmakers have not signaled that they intended to return to Capitol Hill early to work on the deal. Both Republican and Democratic support is needed for the bill agreement to pass.

The agreement comes just days before the so-called “X date” on June 5, which is the earliest date the Treasury Department has signaled the U.S. could default on debt obligations. The initial compromise was first announced on Saturday evening.

The long negotiations between the White House and congressional leaders raised concern among investors that a default on U.S. debt could take place. Wall Street has already contended with persistent inflation and a banking crisis this year.

Stocks closed higher on Friday. The Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 finished last week with gains. The market was closed Monday due to Memorial Day.

Investors will also turn their attention to May jobs data out on Friday, while the April Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics will be released on Wednesday. Corporate earnings from HP Inc and Salesforce are due on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively.



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Meghan Markle knew ‘something serious’ happened between Harry, William at start

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Meghan Markle had sense underlying disagreements between Prince Harry and Prince William from the beginning, says expert.

Body language guur Judi James reveals she noticed Meghan’s face covering gesture for the first time at the Royal Foundation after the Duchess sensed ‘something serious.’

She tells Mirror.co.uk: “This telling footage has many comparisons to the footage of Charles and Diana’s engagement interview, with both showing powerful body language signs of future conflict and relationship splits.

“With Charles it was the terrible ‘Whatever in love means’ that threw an ice bucket over their marriage before the wedding had even taken place.

“With this launch of the ‘fab four’ it’s the moment when the two couples are asked about any disagreements and the spontaneous outbreak of embarrassed body language suggests there are already clashes and conflicts behind the calm smiles.”

Judi later added how during the event Meghan seemed like a misfit.

She added: “When William and Kate speak their delivery is very traditionally regal: slow-paced, low-energy, modest references to respected ‘experts’ and careful and cautious rather than rushed or hurried.

“Harry’s body language is already suggesting a problem. While Meghan sits listening politely, smiling encouragement at the Cambridges and barely moving (as an actress she would understand the rules about not upstaging).

“Harry looks in the depths of a sulk. His hands are clasped in a fig-leaf pose and he looks glumly down at his lap rather than performing any active listening and agreement signals.”

Speaking further about Meghan confidence, Judi added: “Meghan goes off like a rocket of confidence, passion, impatience to make change and extensive experience”.

“She takes the conversation up to a ‘global’ level with her brought experience, talking about her work with CEOs around the world.

“Her thumbs are curled back in the ‘cocked’ position, suggesting confidence and enthusiasm. But there are also a whole volley of cues concerning hair-touching that are, at the same time, suggesting self-awareness, coyness and even a desire to hide,” Judi reveals. 



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Penske assures look into flying Indy 500 wheel

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INDIANAPOLIS — IndyCar owner Roger Penske said he is certain series officials will investigate what led to a wheel coming loose during a crash in the Indianapolis 500 and sailing over the catch fence and grandstands before hitting a parked automobile.

“We haven’t had a wheel come off in a long time,” Penske said. “We were very fortunate we didn’t have a bad accident.”

The cars are supposed to have a tether that keeps the wheel attached even in the event of a wreck. But when Felix Rosenqvist hit the wall between Turns 1 and 2 in the closing laps Sunday and Kyle Kirkwood launched off the rear of his car into the wall, the wheel went soaring over the fence and the corner of the grandstand before landing in the parking lot.

The wheel traveled about 350 yards before crushing the front of a fan’s parked Chevrolet. With a crowd of more than 300,000 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway and a full grandstand in Turns 1 and 2, it was fortunate nobody was seriously injured.

“I saw what happened, saw it bounced on top of a building and went and hit a car over there, which obviously is very concerning,” said Penske, whose driver Josef Newgarden won the race, giving Team Penske its 19th Indy 500 victory.

Penske closed on the purchase of IndyCar and Indianapolis Motor Speedway about three years ago.

“We have tethers on the wheels, and it was a rear wheel that came off,” Penske said after Sunday’s victory celebration, “and I’m sure the guys at IndyCar will look at it, will determine what really happened.”

During the 1987 Indianapolis 500, one fan was killed when a tire flew into the top row of the grandstands. It had come off Tony Bettenhausen’s car and bounced off the front of Roberto Guerrero’s car before landing among the fans.

During a 1998 race at Michigan International Speedway involving CART, which later became part of IndyCar, Adrian Fernandez crashed and a tire and other parts flew into the stands. Three fans were killed and six others were hurt that day.

The next year, three fans were killed and eight injured at Charlotte Motor Speedway when a tire and other debris flew into the stands during an Indy Racing League event. The race was canceled, and IndyCar has not returned to the speedway.

Those incidents resulted in the development of the tethers that are supposed to keep the wheels attached.

The owner of the Chevrolet that took the brunt of the damage Sunday was Robin Matthews, a race fan from Indianapolis. Her car, which she calls “Snowball,” had to be towed because of the damage. She was treated with a chance to kiss the yard of bricks, and Indianapolis Motor Speedway president J. Douglas Boles gave her a lift home.

IndyCar said one person was struck by other debris from the crash but was checked and released from the infield care center.

“I was in this turn,” tweeted John Green, an author from Indianapolis. “Hugely relieved everyone appears to be OK. Watching a wheel fly over my friends at 150 miles per hour is not an experience I’m anxious to repeat.”

Rosenqvist and Kirkwood also were uninjured in the wreck, though the latter went on quite a ride. Kirkwood went airborne after contact and landed upside down against the wall, skidding several hundred yards as sparks flew from his car.

“That’s the scary part,” Kirkwood said. “You’re upside-down and you’re kind of stuck at that point.”





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Source: Celtics’ Brogdon (elbow) plans G7 return

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BOSTON — Celtics point guard Malcolm Brogdon plans to play in the deciding Game 7 of the NBA Eastern Conference finals against the visiting Miami Heat on Monday night, a source told ESPN’s Andscape.

The 2023 Sixth Man of the Year has been dealing with a partial tear in the tendon in his right elbow, an injury that worsened early in this series. After scoring a combined two points on 1-of-13 shooting from the field in Games 3-5, Brogdon sat out Saturday’s Game 6 win in Miami.

While Brogdon’s forearm is still sore, the source said the swelling and pain has subsided and he feels more confident about being able to make a positive impact. He took jump shots in front of the media at shootaround Monday morning.

In his first year with the Celtics, the 6-foot-4, 229-pound veteran averaged 14.9 points, 4.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists in the regular season.

Brogdon, who has played three years each with the Milwaukee Bucks and Indiana Pacers, has never played in the NBA Finals.



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Benedict Cumberbatch had ‘sleepless nights’ after attack at home

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Benedict Cumberbatch had ‘sleepless nights’ after attack at home

Benedict Cumberbatch and his family feared for their lives after a chef carrying a fish knife attacked their North London home.

The armed intruder was recognized as Jack Bissell, who once worked at the Beaumont Hotel in Mayfair as a chef.

According to Daily Mail, the 35-year-old slammed the front door of the Marvel star’s multi-million property, yelling, “I know you’ve moved here, I hope it burns down.”

The star was at his house with his wife and their three children at the time when the attacker shouted his threats.

As per reports, the former chef also physically damaged the 46-year-old property by attacking the intercom, spitting on it, and throwing the plants against the wall.

Later, the authorities caught him through his DNA evidence collected via his spat on the intercom.

“Naturally, all of the family were absolutely terrified and thought this guy was going to get in and hurt them,” an insider close to the situation told the outlet.

“Luckily, it never went that far. Benedict and Sophie have had many sleepless nights since worrying that they may be targeted again,” the source added. “The fact that it was a targeted intrusion makes it a lot more scary.”

On May 10, the court fined Bissel and ordered a three-year restraining order from the Cumberbatch family after he pleaded guilty.

Moreover, the case’s facts could not be reported until they “successfully challenged blanket reporting restrictions this week,” the British tabloid reports.

However, Bissell and Cumberbatch’s connection is still up in the air.



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Notre Dame tops Duke for 1st men’s lacrosse title

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PHILADELPHIA — Liam Entenmann made a season-high 18 saves and Brian Tevlin scored a go-ahead goal with 27 seconds left in the third quarter to help Notre Dame claim its first men’s lacrosse national title with a 13-9 victory over Duke on Monday.

Third-seeded Notre Dame (14-2) had lost in its previous two championship game appearances in 2010 and 2014 — both to Duke. The top-seeded Blue Devils (16-3) were playing in their seventh national championship game in program history.

Entenmann made eight saves on nine shots on goal in the first half as Notre Dame cruised to a 6-1 lead after scoring six unanswered goals — from six different players. After scoring 35 seconds into the game, Duke was held scoreless for the final 29:25 of the first half.

Duke was 1-for-24 shooting in the first half but opened the second going 4-for-6 to get within 6-5. Charles Balsamo knotted it at 7-all with 1:01 left in the third — for the first tie since it was 1-1.

But Notre Dame scored two goals in the final 30 seconds of the third for a 9-7 lead. Tevlin, who helped Yale win the 2018 NCAA title over Duke, and Chris Kavanagh both notched their second goals of the game.

Quinn McCahon capped a 6-1 scoring run for a 13-8 lead with 3:24 left to become the sixth Notre Dame player with two goals.

“I’m not sure I want to watch the film of this one, other than maybe the defense from the first half,” Notre Dame coach Kevin Corrigan said. “You wait your whole career to see this right now.”

Notre Dame held Duke to its lowest-scoring game of the season. Leading scorers Brennan O’Neill and Dyson Williams had one goal apiece. Williams became the fifth Duke player with 60-plus goals in a season.

Tevlin and Garrett Leadmon, of Duke, each scored game-winning goals in the semifinals before scoring the opening goals for their teams in the title game in front of an announced crowd of 30,462 at Lincoln Financial Field.



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Debt ceiling deal’s next steps — getting it through Congress

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Read Time:4 Minute, 45 Second


Now that President Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy have reached an agreement to suspend the debt ceiling and prevent the nation from defaulting on its debts, the White House and congressional leaders must convince enough lawmakers in the narrowly divided House and Senate to pass the legislation.

The agreement includes spending cuts demanded by Republicans, but it is short of the reductions in the sweeping legislation passed by the GOP-majority House last month. In exchange for raising the debt limit for two years — beyond the next presidential election — a two-year budget deal would hold spending flat for 2024 and impose limits for 2025. 

It also expands some work requirements for food-stamp recipients and edits an environmental law to try to streamline reviews to build new energy projects.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen projected last week that the nation could default on its debt obligations by June 5 if lawmakers do not act in time to raise the federal debt ceiling.

Mr. Biden told reporters at the White House Sunday afternoon that he planned to call McCarthy “to make sure all the T’s are crossed and the I’s are dotted.” The House then released the 99-page legislative text Sunday evening.

Here’s what’s next in the rush to pass an agreement through Congress:

Selling the deal

Both Republicans and Democrats are expected to lose some votes, and leaders on both sides have been telling the rank and file that neither side won everything it wanted, as they strive to ensure that the deal has the support to pass both chambers. The president has urged both the House and Senate “to pass the agreement right away.”

Top White House Cabinet officials and aides including chief of staff Jeff Zients, counselor to the president Steve Richetti, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young and several others have been phoning and briefing lawmakers and fielding technical questions from congressional staff, according to a White House official. They have called over 60 House Democrats and briefed House and Senate Democrats, as well as the Congressional Black Caucus, with more specific briefings to come Monday and Tuesday.

Under House rules, lawmakers must have 72 hours to read the bill, and since they received it on Sunday, Wednesday is the earliest day the House can vote. 

McCarthy said he expects a majority of Republicans to support it and many Democrats, too, because Mr. Biden backs the bill. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he expects “there will be Democratic support once we have the ability to be fully briefed by the White House, but I’m not going to predict what those numbers will ultimately look like.” 

Lawmakers’ mixed reaction

The reaction has been mixed, so far. Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina tweeted a vomit emoji, complaining that some Republicans on the call were praising the speaker for getting what he said is “almost zippo in exchange” for the debt ceiling hike.

Rep. Matt Rosendale, Republican of Montana, says he’ll vote no. He said in a statement Sunday, “It is frankly an insult to the American people to support a piece of legislation that continues to put our country’s financial future at risk.”

South Dakota Rep. Dusty Johnson, an ally of McCarthy, told CNN’s “State of the Union” that “overwhelmingly, Republicans in this conference are going to support the deal. How could they not? It’s a fantastic deal.”

Not all Democrats appear to be on board with the agreement, either. Rep. Jim Himes, of Connecticut, said on “Fox News Sunday” that “there is absolutely nothing for the Democrats” in the bill and he’s “tempted to say” he’s voting no.

It appears that the bill will require strong bipartisan support to pass. Jeffries said on “Face the Nation” that he expected Republicans to produce “at least 150 votes, if not more,” meaning that at least 68 Democrats would also have to back it.

Asked Monday if he felt confident it would pass, President Biden said, “You know, I never say I’m confident with what the Congress is going to do. But I feel very good about it.”


President Biden speaks about debt ceiling deal reached with Speaker McCarthy

04:44

Both the House and Senate are expected to return to the Capitol Tuesday, after Memorial Day. 

House rules for the vote

Before the House can consider the bill, the House Rules Committee will hold a hearing at 3 p.m. Tuesday, which will determine the rules and length of time for debating the bill and any amendments that would be allowed.

This committee has a 9-4 Republican majority, including some McCarthy allies. But two House Freedom Caucus members who’ve blasted the deal also sit on the panel,  Rep. Chip Roy, of Texas, and Rep. Ralph Norman, of South Carolina.

McCarthy said the House would vote Wednesday, which would then send the bill to the Senate.

The Senate

Once the bill reaches the Senate, where Democrats have the majority, the pace of action will largely depend on whether any senators try to hold up the bill, possibly with amendment votes. That could tie up the legislation for a few days.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York warned members Sunday that “due to the time it may take to process the legislation in the Senate without cooperation, Senators should prepare for potential Friday and weekend votes.”

Still, the Senate can move quickly when it has agreement from all 100 senators. The bill could be passed by the end of the week and then sent to Mr. Biden, who would sign it into law.

Weijia Jiang, Scott MacFarlane and Zak Hudak contributed to this report.



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Miss ‘Succession’ Already? Here’s What to Watch Next

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Read Time:6 Minute, 4 Second


The end of “Succession” leaves a Waystar Royco-sized hole in our hearts. With the various Roys scattered, licking their wounds, where can bereft fans turn for their regular dose of acid insults, soapy skulduggery and privileged misery grounded by occasional glimpses of human vulnerability and warmth? We have a few ideas.

There are obvious pound-for-pound swaps, past greats like “Mad Men,” “The Americans” and “The Shield.” Each has its own thematic resonance with “Succession” — the metastasizing hollowness of business; the alienation of believing that actually, many things are more important than family; the nature of affection that sprouts from routine cruelty. But those are far from the only worthy follow-ups. Here are a few more to consider.

‘The Righteous Gemstones’

Where to watch: Max

The Roys and the Gemstones, a family of televangelists, are inside-out versions of one another: A bombastic, volatile but wildly successful dad reigns over an empire that his desperate, indulged children will inherit if they don’t all kill each other first. Bickering and jockeying abound, fueled by the mutually understood but outwardly denied reality that no one in the second generation is truly up to the task. They all compensate with glorious, vulgar insults. The daughter is married to a bumbling oaf, whom she bullies with real glee. The younger son sublimates his sexuality. The older son’s ego could pull the earth off its axis.

In “Succession,” the stakes are grave, but the characters approach them with flippancy; in “Gemstones,” the circumstances are absurd, but the characters take them incredibly seriously. The shows share an understanding of the corrupting powers of wealth and a conviction that there is no greater achievement than standing onstage and singing a song. (“Misbehavin’” has leg up on “L to the OG,” though.) If “Succession” is an ice bath, “The Righteous Gemstones” is a slip-n-slide, but the water is springing from the same source.

‘BoJack Horseman’

Where to watch: Netflix.

BoJack is, like Kendall, a character with a history of serious drug abuse, whose carelessness has led to people’s deaths, who will never be able to compensate for the absence of his parents’ love. He is mean and very funny, and also jaded, vulnerable and able to deliver a searing, soaring eulogy. They each have their Gatsby-in-the-pool moments, their long memories and deep pockets. Heck, Kendall even says he’s thinking of “hitting up some ‘BoJack’ guys” to write his tweets.

“BoJack” and “Succession” share a thrilling attention to detail — production design meant for obsessive pausing and screenshotting, with a particular knack for tickers at the bottom of inane cable-news shows. (“‘Speak English!’ Yells Patriot at Soy Milk.”) “Succession” has Vaunter-as-Gawker; “BoJack” has Girl Croosh-as-Buzzfeed.

‘Peep Show’

Where to watch: The Roku Channel, Pluto TV.

Before Jesse Armstrong created “Succession,” and before he created the brilliant political comedy “The Thick of It,” he cocreated this warped buddy comedy starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb as Mark and Jez, two dopey roommates who are perhaps the ur Disgusting Brothers.

“Peep Show” is shot mostly POV-style, and it revels in all the awkward and crude intimacies of one’s thoughts. Like Tom and Greg, Mark and Jez are often scheming but rarely with any real accuracy; when their plans materialize, it’s usually a monkey-paw scenario or an odd coincidence, a tiny boat in a vast sea that sometimes sweeps it ashore.

‘The Beautiful Lie’

Where to watch: Acorn TV.

This six-part Australian mini-series is a modern-day adaptation of “Anna Karenina,” with Sarah Snook starring as the ill-fated lead. As Shiv, Snook is all tiny trembles and self-containment, but as Anna, her performance is grander, wider, far more open; this Anna is reckless in ways Shiv would never be. Some of Anna’s smiles are even warm and genuine! The show itself is soapy in a good way, full of beachy horniness and angry fights.

‘Quiz’

Where to watch: AMC+.

Macfadyen delivers a different version of a doofy husband in this terrific three-part British docudrama mini-series about the creation of “Who Wants to be a Millionaire?” and the cheating scandal it begot.

Charles Ingram (Macfadyen) is an army major whose wife, Diana (Sian Clifford), is a trivia buff who convinces him to go on “Millionaire,” where he wins £1 million. But something seems off — could that guy really know those answers? Or was he being tipped off with a cough from a conspirator in the audience? The show itself is a tight, twisty ride, and it is additional evidence of Macfadyen’s mastery of “wait … is that guy dumber than he seems, or smarter than he seems?”

‘I Hate Suzie’

Where to watch: Max.

Cocreated by the “Succession” writer Lucy Prebble, “Suzie” centers on a former child star turned B-list actress (played by Billie Piper, the show’s other creator) whose life implodes when intimate photos of her are leaked to a tabloid. In Season 2, she crawls her way back into the public’s good graces with a stint on a dance competition series, though that carries its own emotional costs.

Both shows love to play off what viewers “hope” will happen, and their disciplined refusal to give over to the more familiar contours of happy endings and redemption make them richer and more fraught. The Roys, and Suzie, read a lot of their own press, often struggling to see themselves anywhere other than in reflection.

‘Shtisel’

Where to watch: Nowhere right now, but one hopes that will change.

This Israeli drama, set within a modern ultra-Orthodox family, is not currently available to stream, but fingers crossed that it will re-emerge in the not-too-distant future. There’s also no way to write a “Succession” adjacency list and not include it — the shows are deeply alike.

Like the Roys, the Shtisel children see their father less as a dad than like a temperamental god; their achievements and failures can never truly be their own. If “Gemstones” is the sillier version, then “Shtisel” is the more serious one, more steeped in grief and moments of magical thinking. And much as the Roys say, “yeah,” when they mean “no” and vice versa, almost no one in “Shtisel” ever says what they mean.

The real pleasure in putting “Shtisel” and “Succession” in conversation, though, comes from their different approaches to desire, embodied in their different portrayals of food — cooking, eating, hunger itself. Food is omnipresent in “Shtisel,” though not in luxurious ways. It’s one-egg omelets and wan, poorly sliced tomatoes, a two-liter of soda resentfully plunked on a table. In “Succession,” visible desire is a sin, and only the lowliest characters eat; the only acceptable form of passion is anger. There’s plenty of anger in “Shtisel” too, but lust and ambition are also permissible, love exists, and religious fervor is virtuous.



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The inside story of Pochettino’s move to Chelsea

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Read Time:14 Minute, 28 Second


LONDON — The Todd Boehly-Clearlake Capital era at Chelsea is less than year old, but Mauricio Pochettino’s arrival as head coach marks the dawn of a new era. It cannot come soon enough.

Nobody could question the new owners’ ambitions; having bought the club for £2.5 billion last May they committed a further £600 million to signing new players across two transfer windows, including the British transfer record of midfielder Enzo Fernandez from Benfica for £106.8m. But that huge financial investment has produced an embarrassing return: two sacked managers, the club’s second trophyless season since 2016, and bottom-half Premier League finish that sees them miss out on European football next season. Things could hardly have gone much worse.

The bloated first-team squad lacks direction and cohesion, with caretaker boss and club legend Frank Lampard unable to inject any impetus after replacing Graham Potter in April. Lampard’s record: eight defeats, two draws and one win from his 11 games.

Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)

After so much upheaval, Chelsea needed a leader capable of moulding their expensive parts into a working machine. Step forward, Pochettino — a man who forged his reputation with the club’s London rivals, Tottenham Hotspur. The 51-year-old remains one of the most highly respected managers in Europe, taking Tottenham from flirting with European football to four consecutive top-four Premier League finishes (2016-2019) and a Champions League final (a defeat to Liverpool in 2019).

However, a mixed spell with Paris Saint-Germain raised as many questions as answers about the Argentine’s ability at the highest level. Pochettino won the Coupe de France and Ligue 1 with PSG but was unable to make inroads in the club’s quest for maiden Champions League trophy amid rumours of rifts with the team’s biggest stars such as Kylian Mbappe and Neymar. Yet for many in England, the team spirit and high-octane football that Pochettino’s Spurs team produced in going to the brink of winning major honours lingers stronger in the memory.

It was enough to convince Chelsea’s beleaguered owners that Pochettino is the man to lead them at this crucial juncture in the club’s evolution. But how did it come about?

Why Pochettino?

Boehly and Clearlake Capital executive Behdad Eghbali moved quickly after firing Thomas Tuchel on Sept. 6. Sources have told ESPN that Tuchel felt he was close to the sack during a preseason in which he became frustrated at both the amount of travelling Chelsea were undertaking (they travelled across the U.S., often in high temperatures, starting with a training camp in Los Angeles and ending in Orlando, Florida) and the amount of engagement the new owners were demanding from him internally.

Although Boehly and Eghbali were familiarising themselves with possible alternatives, the decision to appoint Potter from Brighton was swift. They spoke with other candidates — including Pochettino and also, according to club sources, multiple managers who offered themselves up for the position without solicitation — but Potter was almost immediately identified as the club’s first choice. He was appointed two days after Tuchel’s exit.

Yet the way in which Potter’s tenure unravelled in less than seven months, with 11 defeats and eight draws from 31 games, made the Chelsea hierarchy determined to follow a more measured process this time around. While Boehly and Eghbali would get involved in the later stages, they were keen for co-sporting directors Paul Winstanley and Laurence Stewart to lead the search.

The club planned to speak to a variety of candidates about the role in creating a first formal shortlist of seven names. That septet was then gradually whittled down over the ensuing weeks in what one source connected to a manager involved described as “like a beauty pageant.”

But not every interested party was content with walking through the hoops. Former Spain and Barcelona boss Luis Enrique flew to London to hold in-person talks with the Chelsea hierarchy shortly after Potter’s exit. Sources told ESPN that Enrique made it clear he was willing to take the job immediately, and the loose framework of a contract lasting the rest of this season and then for a further two years was even discussed. Enrique left the meeting believing he was a strong candidate, but Chelsea then appointed Lampard as caretaker until the end of the season, creating a fresh sense of frustration.

Chelsea also met with former Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann, with initial talks said to have been positive on both sides. However, with the Blues still at a formative stage of their thinking, Nagelsmann withdrew from the process, with club sources suggesting he became irritated by the lack of progress. On the other side, a source close to Chelsea argued the club’s due diligence on Nagelsmann came back with “mixed results” and suggested the 35-year-old wanted a “coronation” rather than to engage fully with a detailed manager search.

Sources have told ESPN that Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou and Feyenoord’s Arne Slot were among others the club discussed, before a three-man shortlist of Pochettino, Burnley’s Vincent Kompany and one other candidate was identified.

As talks intensified, Pochettino emerged as the preferred option. The composition of his backroom staff was eventually agreed, with longtime assistant manager Jesus Perez, plus first-team coach Miguel D’Agostino, goalkeeping coach Toni Jimenez and his sports scientist son, Sebastiano, all joining the club.

Sources have told ESPN that further discussions have taken place on ensuring Pochettino has an active say over player recruitment. There has been an acknowledgement internally at Chelsea that to attract an elite coach, a degree of compromise on how the club’s hierarchy works on a day-to-day basis will be required in order for the transition to be as smooth as possible.

Boehly has hired two sporting directors — Winstanley and Stewart — as well as technical director Christopher Vivell, while Joe Shields, Kyle Macaulay and Jim Fraser are responsible for talent management and recruitment. Chelsea are keen to allow data analytics to play a significant role in their decision-making, but Pochettino is expected to have a prominent voice within this group to help shape the squad in a satisfactory and collaborative way. Pochettino will not officially begin work until the end of the season, but sources have told ESPN he will speak to Lampard as part of a series of conversations to garner as much information about the group as possible to ensure he can hit the ground running and reach their goals.

“We’re a long way off when Antonio Conte last won the title,” Dan Silver, Chelsea Supporters Trust board member, told ESPN. “Pochettino has done enough for Tottenham in terms of how he developed them. He took a while to get his ideas across but he turned them around.

“Chelsea are arguably now where Tottenham were when he took over. He’s not coming into a dressing room of winners. He’s got young players who have been parachuted in very quickly. He’ll have time to work with them on the training ground with no European football and hopefully he’ll get us challenging for top four which is the minimum expectation next season.”

For his part, Pochettino has not been short of job offers since leaving PSG, but although there was speculation he could return to Spurs after they sacked Conte, sources said that Tottenham never made a formal approach to rehire him. Pochettino was reported to have been concerned about the impact on his legacy of potentially choosing Chelsea over Spurs; ultimately that situation was avoided because his old club never actively pursued him.

play

1:09

Laurens: Boehly should let the people around him lead Chelsea

Julien Laurens believes Chelsea chairman Todd Boehly should let the right people at Chelsea lead the club as they have the experience to do it.

What has been the reaction within the squad to his appointment?

Sources close to multiple players in the squad have told ESPN that Pochettino’s appointment has been greeted positively, not least because of the clarity it will bring this summer. Potter had his favourite players and while Lampard criticised the overall fitness of the squad, those within it knew meaningful conversations about their status in the squad would occur only once a new permanent head coach was in place. There is respect for Pochettino’s achievements as a coach and a willingness to embrace the style of football he became synonymous with at Tottenham.

Fans are feeling positive too. “I’m very pleased, very excited,” Silver added. “Pochettino has got Premier League experience, arguably made Tottenham into the best Tottenham team in my lifetime and I started football in 1982. He’s got that edge that we need. He’s got an iron fist, won’t accept mediocrity and very good appointment given who was out there. He was the best of what was available and we didn’t have to pay compensation to another club for another manager.”

Some supporters have had a more mixed reaction, though, chiefly due to Pochettino’s history with Spurs. The Argentine managed the north Londoners for 5½ years up to November 2019, overseeing a period in which they finished above Chelsea twice in his five full seasons (although the Blues won two Premier League titles in that time.)

Perhaps most infamously, Pochettino became personally involved in what became known as the “Battle of the Bridge” in May 2016. Spurs had to beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge to keep their chances of a Premier League title alive, while Chelsea were languishing in mid-table after a dreadful season that saw manager Jose Mourinho depart in December. Their only motivation was to stop Tottenham from catching Leicester to win the title.

Pochettino was a bundle of aggression on the touchline, setting the tone for a fiery contest. And, when Spurs defender Danny Rose and Chelsea winger Willian clashed close to the dugouts just before half-time, the manager entered the field of play and split the pair up before moving toward Willian as players from both sides ran to involve themselves in the melee.

Spurs blew a 2-0 lead to eventually draw 2-2, a result that ended their title hopes, sparking another scrap at full-time. They ended the game with nine yellow cards — a Premier League record for one team in a single game — and it would have been worse had referee Mark Clattenburg not let so much go (he later admitted there should have been three red cards in the match.)

Spurs have had a history of appointing former Chelsea managers in the Premier League era — Conte, Mourinho and Andre Villas-Boas — but this is the first time since Glenn Hoddle in 2001 that the Blues have hired someone so closely associated with Spurs to be their manager. In the intervening 22 years, the shift in power between the two clubs has been profound, with the Blues winning every major club trophy possible in a total haul of 21 and Tottenham landing only the 2008 League Cup.

Pochettino has won the Ligue 1 title with Paris Saint-Germain, but there are doubts about his ability to deliver the game’s biggest prizes. His behaviour in the “Battle of the Bridge” was cited by some as evidence of inexperience under pressure but, seven years on, Chelsea will feel they have a more polished version of Pochettino.

What is on Pochettino’s to-do list?

The Chelsea squad in its present form is almost unmanageable. There are 31 first-team players, plus eight players out on loan including Romelu Lukaku, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Tiemoue Bakayoko.

Sources close to the club have told ESPN that Potter struggled to arrange training sessions that fully engaged such a vast number of players, while veteran defender Thiago Silva admitted recently that the club had to “increase the size of the changing rooms because they didn’t fit the size of the team.”

While some managers join a club with a wishlist of players they would like to sign — and Pochettino will likely be no exception — the first priority is to make decisions on which players should be allowed to move on. The clock is ticking. Any exits completed before June 30 would help offset the £600m expenditure overseen by Boehly and Clearlake Capital as they would fall in the 2022-23 tax year and would help reduce the overall loss and comply with financial fair play.

In March, the club announced a loss of £121.3m, but the total commitment on new signings under Boehly/Clearlake has been estimated at over £1.2bn including transfer fees, wages and agent fees. The club sought to offset some of that outlay by handing out seven- or eight-year contracts, meaning transfer fees are amortised over a longer period, mitigating the potential losses for 2022-23 to the year ending June 30.

But the absence of any European football is a loss in revenue that Boehly and Clearlake did not anticipate, leading in part to the timing of Potter’s departure as they desperately hoped the return of Lampard would spark a short-term uptick in form. Consequently, compliance with UEFA’s financial fair play rules is a mounting concern. Money from player exits has always been important to Chelsea. The club have reported overall losses totalling £343m over the four years of published accounts up to 2021-22, despite £354m profit in player trading in that period.

“If they get this appointment wrong and it is another year without Champions League football, that is huge from a financial perspective,” Silver said. “We need to have a good season. They need to get this right — if not what do we become? A mid-table team? Could they then build the new stadium? It is a huge season for us moving forward, almost as much as it was when Roman Abramovich came in in 2003.”

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Pochettino will be expected to work with several young players Chelsea have invested huge sums in as part of a strategy to develop a fresh core. Fernandez, Benoit Badiashile, Mykhailo Mudryk and Wesley Fofana are four members of that group. But as ESPN reported on Feb. 10, Chelsea have long planned a host of departures this summer as they look to streamline their squad and balance the books.

Pochettino wants a say in identifying which players are allowed to depart, although the club’s recruitment team has already established views of its own. Christian Pulisic, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Hakim Ziyech are among the players expected to leave, while the club will likely listen to offers for many others including Kalidou Koulibaly and Hudson-Odoi. Talks with £97.5m striker Lukaku are planned at the end of the season once he returns from his loan at Inter Milan.

Contractual situations elsewhere will influence decisions. Sources close to the player have told ESPN that midfielder Mason Mount is increasingly likely to leave given he has one year left on his deal and there has been no progress over an extension for several months. Sources said Pochettino is an admirer of Mount’s abilities, but Liverpool, Manchester City and Manchester United are among the interested clubs.

Elsewhere, Mateo Kovacic is in similar position, with City reportedly monitoring the Croatia midfielder, and N’Golo Kante is out of contract this summer with his latest injury setback casting doubt over the recent optimism that he will sign a new deal.

Pochettino must quickly identify the players he wants while creating a sense of identity to give Chelsea some structure to their football. Improving fitness is also likely to be high on the agenda. Sources at Chelsea’s Cobham training ground have told ESPN that while Potter was generally liked, even as results soured, the atmosphere around the place was considered too relaxed for an elite team. Lampard seemingly picked up on that when suggesting shortly after joining the club that the players he inherited lacked requisite fitness to perform consistently at the highest level. He did his best to avoid criticising Potter directly, but the implication was clear.

Pochettino’s high-press, high-energy style means a gruelling preseason likely lies in wait for Chelsea this summer amid five friendly games in the United States starting with Wrexham on July 19 in North Carolina and ending with Borussia Dortmund in Chicago on Aug. 2.

Underpinning it all, Pochettino must establish strong relationships with the hierarchy Boehly has appointed above the head coach. Tuchel was fired, in part, for his reluctance to work with hands-on owners and engage with differing voices about the team’s progress. Potter was identified as a more amenable character able to work in a collaborative environment.

Chelsea will hope Pochettino is a combination of Tuchel’s pedigree and Potter’s personable manner. If that happens, the new era at Stamford Bridge looks bright.



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‘Jon Snow’ series might not see the daylight

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‘Jon Snow’ series might not see the daylight

Jon Snow may have to wait a bit longer as HBO has still not greenlighted the Game of Thrones spinoff.

During an interview with Deadline, the top execs responded to Kit Harington question on whether he would return to don his robes back.

It is still “very early stages,” adding, “We’re just working deeply with the writers to get it in shape for potential greenlight, but at this point, no, no determination on whether it can go all the way.”

Previously, author George R.R. Martin unwrapped the plans for a Jon Snow spinoff in June 2022.

Later, Harington also multiplies the excitement by teasing the series.

“I think if you asked him, he would’ve felt he got off lightly,” he continued. “At the end of the show when we find him in that cell, he’s preparing to be beheaded and he wants to be. He’s done. The fact he goes to the Wall is the greatest gift and also the greatest curse.”

“He’s gotta go back up to the place with all this history and live out his life thinking about how he killed Dany, and live out his life thinking about Ygritte dying in his arms, and live out his life thinking about how he hung Olly, and live out his life thinking about all of this trauma, and that, that’s interesting.”



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