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Chelsea players feeling pressure of poor results - Pochettino

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Craig Burley heaps praise on Manchester United following their 2-1 win over Chelsea in the Premier League. (2:15)

Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino has said "pressure" is inevitable when results are not forthcoming as his side face an uphill battle to qualify for European football this season.

Nearing the midway point of Pochettino's first season in charge at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea are 10th in the Premier League -- four points behind ninth-place West Ham -- and will need to improve their results or face another season in midtable.

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"They know exactly what we expect from them," Pochettino said in a news conference on Friday. "We talk about young players, they need to be in a place where they feel comfortable, where they feel confidence. We cannot forget that we are at a club like Chelsea. The pressure is massive. We need to win, and when you don't win you feel the pressure.

"We know what we need to do. We know what we are doing, but it is only a matter of time -- that can take a year, that can take six months -- but for sure we are giving something that is going to pay off."

Pochettino promised that Chelsea would compete for Champions League qualification in the future but refused to put a timeframe on when he expected to do so and seemed to admit it is unlikely to happen this season.

"We are going to challenge [for Champions League qualification places], yes. Maybe not now, but in the future," he said.

On Sunday, Chelsea travel to face Everton, who have won two of their three matches since being deducted 10 points for breaching the Premier League's profit and sustainability rules.

Forward Christopher Nkunku is unlikely to make his Chelsea debut this weekend, the Argentine boss said, as he continues to recover from a knee injury he sustained in preseason.