Sunday 24 September 2017

Buck: League finish not good enough

Bruce Buck
Bruce Buck

Press Association

Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck has branded the club's failure to finish in the Barclays Premier League top four as unsatisfactory.

In what may be a blow to caretaker manager Roberto Di Matteo's hopes of being appointed manager full-time, Buck vowed he and owner Roman Abramovich would move to ensure there was no repeat next season.

The Blues had been fifth when he was appointed and Buck wrote in Chelsea's official matchday programme ahead of the final home game of the season against Blackburn: "We do not consider that to be satisfactory and Roman and the board will be working over the summer to try to ensure that doesn't happen again."

Despite winning the FA Cup and leading the club to the Champions League final since replacing the sacked Andre Villas-Boas just over two months ago, Di Matteo could only manage a sixth-placed finish in the league.

Buck was reportedly unhappy with Di Matteo's team selection in Tuesday's night's 4-1 thrashing at FA Cup final victims Liverpool, a result which ended their top-four hopes.

He wrote: "We were all very disappointed with the result on Tuesday night in Liverpool.

"We just couldn't get into the game, and we played to Liverpool's tune. But if we had the choice to win the FA Cup final or Tuesday night's game, I know which one I would have picked. So, in that sense, I am satisfied."

Chelsea now must win Saturday's Champions League final against Bayern Munich to qualify for next season's competition.

It is the Blues' second final after they were beaten on penalties by Manchester United in Moscow four years ago.

Buck said: "We came oh-so-close in Moscow. We want to do better this time."

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