Saturday 21 September 2019

Sarri wants to stay despite fan unrest

The Italian had to listen to repeated chants of “We want Sarri out” and “You don’t know what you’re doing”. Photo: Nick Potts/PA Wire
The Italian had to listen to repeated chants of “We want Sarri out” and “You don’t know what you’re doing”. Photo: Nick Potts/PA Wire

Graham Thomas

A defiant Maurizio Sarri insisted he wants to lead Chelsea in to next season, despite the club's fans calling for him to be sacked during their controversial victory at Cardiff City.

The Italian had to listen to repeated chants of "We want Sarri out" and "You don't know what you're doing" before his team came from a goal behind to snatch a 2-1 victory.

Rarely can a Chelsea manager have been on the receiving end of such sustained and direct abuse.

Yet, afterwards Sarri felt bold enough to declare: "I want to stay here.. When I arrived the team were 30 points behind Manchester City. I want to stay and improve results, but it is not easy work.

"At the moment, there is a difference between Manchester City, Liverpool and us. I want to improve the team."

Asked how he had felt when the chants of "We want Sarri out" rang out from the visiting fans, Sarri said: "I don't want to answer, but I can understand the reaction of the fans.

"But it was probably best for them to wait until the end of the match.

"I am getting used to this and for me it's not a big problem. I just have to work to change their opinion.

"If I win matches, then the fans will be happy. Sometimes during a season, you need to win matches like this.

"We were lucky with the first goal, but I think we deserved to win."

As for his decision to start Eden Hazard and midfielder N'Golo Kante on the bench, along with England teenager Callum Hudson-Odoi, Sarri said: "Hazard cannot play 70 matches a season. Kante has played a lot of games and in every season there is a moment when you have to give players a rest."

The victory keeps Chelsea in sixth place, but only a point behind fourth-placed Manchester United. (© Independent News Service)

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