Roberto Di Matteo was already a Chelsea legend when he took over for Andre Villas-Boas in March 2012. Over the following three months, he made sure he’d never be forgotten. That he was sacked six months after that, a controversial decision to this day, only added to the mythos.
Cups were always Robbie’s speciality. As a player, he scored in two FA Cup finals, winning both (1997 and 2000). He also scored in a League Cup final in 1998, winning that as well. He added two European trophies as a player (Cup Winners’ Cup, Super Cup) and then of course won the Champions League as a manager, just a couple weeks after winning another FA Cup to boot.
Perhaps some of those winning vibes will have rubbed off on the current squad and the notably trophy-less head coach as Di Matteo dropped by Cobham this week. There were handshakes and smiles all around on what was certainly a happy occasion.
Ex- Blue & Boss Roberto Di Matteo was at Chelsea's training ground today, met Sarri and Zola pic.twitter.com/uPtv4KbAWj— MSCFC (@SarrifutbolCFC) August 22, 2018
Only two players remain at Chelsea from that special night in Munich on May 19, 2012, and one of the, has actually left and come back in the meantime. But Cahill, a fresh-faced nobody from Bolton at the time, keeps soldiering on, now as the oldest non-goalkeeper in the squad and (and still the captain, technically).
Another proper legend at the Allianz Arena that famous night was Ashley Cole, the best left-back in club history and a man known fro his glorious goal-line clearances.
Still going strong at 37, Ash is in the middle of his third season at LA Galaxy in MLS (and still making those clearances) but, as usual, has also been keeping an eye on Chelsea. He thinks Sarri’s outfit could be a surprise contender.
“Chelsea have gone about their business a little bit quiet in terms of having a new manager. They should be fighting for the title, but I don’t think people are [thinking that way] at the minute. To get six points from two games, it’s a fantastic start. They’ve just got to keep going.”
-Ashley Cole; source: ESPN
Gotta love that positive thinking. Let’s hope it’s infectious.