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Azpilicueta understands fans’ anger, wants Chelsea to play better

Time to step up

Cardiff City v Chelsea FC - Premier League Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images

At the end of the day, a win is a win. Even the ugliest and luckiest ones like yesterday’s count the same.

The two-goal, linesman-aided comeback victory might have briefly appeased the masses, but it did little to change the frustration and anger surrounding the team’s style of football and the manager’s decisions. The away support at Cardiff City Stadium left no doubt about their displeasure, chanting “We want Sarri out” and “[FUN] Sarri-ball” repeatedly and vociferously throughout the second half.

One could argue that some of the complaints about tactics and team selection are going a bit too far — and Sarri certainly would be in that camp — but everyone accepts that the results have not been up to par for most of the past four months. Matchday captain Cesar Azpilicueta certainly has had plenty of practice relaying such messages in post-match interviews. Unfortunately, he’s now had to do it so many times, his messages, delivered largely in the same manner, have lost all their meaning, if they ever had any to begin with. (Words are just words, after all; useless without action.)

“I cannot complain about the fans. We have to give them something to enjoy on the pitch. With recent performances, it is normal they are not happy. It’s up to us to turn this around.”

”We have always had their support in the bad moments, and when things are going well, we all enjoy them together. We have a great chance starting Wednesday [against Brighton] at the Bridge to play a great game and create a great atmosphere.”

“I think in the last couple of games, the performances have not been at our level. We didn’t create a lot of chances, we conceded goals in an easy way. I think there is a lot to improve.

“We are nearly at the end of the season so we must step up. Yesterday we showed great character because we normally don’t come back from bad results. Yesterday was the second time in the Premier League that we did so. We got the three points but we have to be critical and we know we have to do better.”

-César Azpilicueta; source: Sky Sports

Sarri, as head coach, obviously takes the blame and carries the responsibility for Chelsea’s results — it’s part of his job! — but the onus isn’t just on him to turn the season around and get back into the top four. We are only one point away from the top four. This is not the time to give up and just go through the motions.

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