Manchester City 6, Chelsea 0. How does something like that happen? Is it motivation? Is it tactics? Is it the sum of many little things or the result of just a few big mistakes? Either, Chelsea have not made a habit of losing by large margins over the past couple decades, but have now experienced two of the club’s worst losses in the last 28 years, 4-0 and 6-0, in the last two away matches.
Or could it be that Chelsea are simply not good enough?
“The last match wasn’t a problem of motivation. In the first four or five minutes we started well. We were not able to react. We need to solve the problems. I think sometimes as the match in Tottenham in Premier League we had not the right approach, this match was different. We had good training, we had the right motivation. We conceded and then weren’t able to do anything.”
Previous losses had Sarri pointing fingers at the squad’s mentality, but even he now seems to recognize that the problem runs deeper than that, and the fix or the solution, whatever it may be, won’t be as simple as just finding a way to motivate the players. It’s going to take time, effort, and patience to recover from Sunday’s blow alone, let alone to improve the team’s level of play. We’ll have to do it one game, one step, one punch, one round at a time.
“Things have not been too easy of course. After a match like in Manchester it is normal. It is not easy to play tomorrow after 6-0, we want to play well and win. It will not be really very easy. They are compact and solid and have a good defensive phase. We want to win.”
“Tomorrow is the most important, then Monday FA Cup the most important, then final of League Cup, we need to have short-term targets. We need to have a good result.. We need to get through, then win the cup. We need targets in the short term and then dream in the long term.”
Unfortunately, if we don’t improve markedly in the short term, there won’t be much left to dream about in the long term a long term, especially for Sarri himself. But, for now, his working relationship with the club’s top brass seems good enough, even if it’s not conducted directly with Roman Abramovich.
“[I have] not [talked with Abramovich] this week. It depends on the president. It’s not [that I] never [talk to him], [but it’s] not very often. Not never. [I have] spoken to him, [but] not this week. I like to speak to someone of the club, not necessarily the owner. I speak to Marina and for me that is enough.”
-Maurizio Sarri; Source: Football.London
The focus should be on the pitch and the training ground anyway. Another loss seems unthinkable, but the best we can do at this point is hope.