Mauricio Pochettino lauds Raheem Sterling after Chelsea's clinical win over Luton Town

England forward scores twice to hand manager first league win at Blues

Chelsea's Raheem Sterling celebrates after scoring against Luton Town at Stamford Bridge. Getty
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Raheem Sterling secured a brace and Nicolas Jackson bagged his first goal for the club as Chelsea eased past Luton Town 3-0 to give Mauricio Pochettino his first Premier League win as Blues boss on Friday.

Sterling extended his impressive start to the season with a dazzling display that featured a sublime opener followed by a well-taken second and then an assist for Jackson.

Sterling has been one of the few bright spots for his team this season, impressing during the opening 1-1 draw with Liverpool and last week's 3-1 loss to West Ham United.

Pochettino was full of praise for Sterling and said the England forward deserved "full credit" for returning to form.

The 28-year-old has come into his own under the Argentine coach, having struggled to find form for much of his time at Chelsea since his move from Manchester City in July last year.

"His commitment in the way he wants to contribute with the team, with his work ethic and quality, he deserves the full credit for his performance," Pochettino said. "I'm so pleased for him.

"He told me last season was a difficult season for him, but I am very pleased when the player is happy. And when an offensive player can score or assist, for us, it's the best feeling."

Sterling had held talks with Pochettino about reinventing his role at the club.

"Our first conversation with all of the players, and Raheem, I love to ask the position they love to play, how they feel, how they see themselves," Pochettino said.

"It's not the position, it's the animation and the way the team is going to link in between them. It's to find the best position ... to provide the best platform, position and place and link with the player where they can [show] their best quality.

"It's really important, the process ... When you want to build a team in the process that we are, it's a matter of time.

Pochettino said he was pleased for Jackson and predicted there are more goals to come for the forward, who was signed this summer and is the team's only fit striker at the moment.

“He’s amazing. It’s difficult to find a player like him in the market," Pochettino said. "For me he’s going to be one of the great strikers. He has the potential to be.”

It was a second straight loss for promoted Luton, whose first home game of the season was postponed last weekend because of ongoing work on their home stadium to get it up to Premier League standards.

Updated: August 26, 2023, 6:40 AM