Chelsea vs Malmo - Sarri refuses to compromise principles despite speculation over future

Posted Thursday, February 21, 2019 by PA

Chelsea vs Malmo - Sarri refuses to compromise principles despite speculation over future

Maurizio Sarri has no intention of moving away from his footballing principles but maintains he can have a long-term future as Chelsea head coach and persuade sceptical supporters that his way is the right way.

Owner Roman Abramovich is not renowned for his patience and the humiliating losses to Bournemouth and Manchester City, followed by the negative reaction of the fans during Monday’s FA Cup exit to Manchester United, could result in Sarri’s departure after just seven months in the job.

Sarri’s future could be determined by Thursday’s Europa League last-32 second leg with Malmo – they hold a 2-1 first-leg advantage – Sunday’s Carabao Cup final with City and next Wednesday’s Premier League clash with Tottenham.

The 60-year-old said: “The system is a false problem. I want to see football in another way.”

Sarri’s stubborn refusal to compromise on his 4-3-3 system and possession-based style known as ‘Sarri-ball’ and predictable substitutions were ridiculed by the home supporters on Monday, who joined in as United fans sang “You’re getting sacked in the morning” and added “F*** Sarri-ball”.

Asked if he can change the fans’ views, Sarri added: “We need to win three, four matches in a row. It’s the only solution.

“I can understand very well the frustration of our fans because they are used to winning. Now we are in trouble, so I can understand very well.

“There isn’t another way. We can only have good performances and results.”

Sarri says he has not spoken to Abramovich or director Marina Granovskaia this week and insists he has faced more difficult periods in a long career in Italy.

Asked if this was the most difficult period of his career, Sarri said: “Not at all. I had a lot of problems in the past, especially in League One, League Two (Serie B, Serie C).

“I have to think that I will be the manager of Chelsea for a long time, otherwise I cannot work. I am not sure (if I will be here for a long time), but I have to think this. I have to work and I want to work with a long-range target.

“Of course in this moment it’s very difficult to think we’re able to win three, four matches in a row. As you know very well in football everything can change in one day. I think we need first of all a good performance, a good result and with more confidence, we are able to do anything.”

Malmo boss Uwe Rosler has sympathy for Sarri’s predicament, but is confident the Swedes can add to the Italian’s woes.

Former Brentford, Leeds, Wigan and Fleetwood boss Rosler said: “At a club like Chelsea the pressure is always on. It’s all about results.

“He has to live with the pressure, like we all do. Not tomorrow, but in general, I wish he comes through this difficult period and will continue.

“The goal made the game really interesting for us. I know we need to score, but we can. So, see what happens.”

Malmo beat Besiktas in Turkey to secure their place in the knockout stages.

They could encounter another hostile environment at Stamford Bridge, if the Chelsea fans turn on Sarri again.

Rosler added: “I’ve been in his situation before. It’s not helpful.

“But we’re focusing on us. It doesn’t matter who starts for them tomorrow. We have a game plan.

“It’s very, very difficult (but) it is possible tomorrow to get a positive result.”

Iceland midfielder Arnor Ingvi Traustason is poised to join the Malmo squad on Thursday after his partner, Andrea, gave birth to a baby girl, the couple’s first child.

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