• By Paul Lagan

Sarri won't resign after fans' vent their ire: No, no, I want to stay


Maurizio Sarri will not resign if fans’ chants against him continue.

The travelling supporters made their views known during Chelsea’s match against Cardiff today when it looked like the Blues were heading towards another away defeat.

A goal from Cesar Azpilicueta who was clearly offside when he nodded home an equaliser six minutes from time and a Ruben Loftus-Cheek winner in added time gave the Blues all three points. But up to that point, the team played well below par and the fans demanded he be sacked.

But the Italian was having none of that: “No, no, I want to stay here,” he said after the game.

“When I arrived here, this team, on the table, was 30 points behind Manchester City. They were fifth. So I want to stay here, I want to improve the results. But, of course, it wasn't a very easy work.

"Probably, at the moment, there is a difference between Manchester City, Liverpool and us. We can fight with the others, I think. We are trying to do it, but we have to work very well and, for a long time, if we want to arrive in the top two."

And his response to the chants? "I don't want to answer,” he said.

“I can understand it very well. I have been on the pitch for the last 45 years, so I know the reaction of the fans. I was really disappointed for my players, because they were fighting.

"Probably it was better to wait until the end of the match. But, for me, it's not a big problem. Of course, I can understand. Unfortunately, in the last period, I am getting used to this. Unfortunately. I have to work just in order to change their opinion."

Chelsea face Brighton, at home on Wednesday in the league and Sarri will have to produce a winning team to try and win the fans around.

Sarri focuses only on team performances and not winning the fans’ favour.

He said: “I don't know. I think that we only need to win matches. If you win matches, the fans will be happy. Of course, we need to improve and play better. But sometimes, during the season, you need to win matches like this. We lost in Everton after our best first half of the season, playing very good football, but ended up losing the match. Today we started very badly but, in the end, we won. Probably with a bit of luck, but, for sure, there was a bit of unluckiness at Everton."

Sarri admits he did not see Azpilicueta's offside goal but recognised his team was lucky to get all three points.

He said: "We were lucky. We were lucky because, in the first half, we didn't play very well. As usual in the last period, at the beginning of the second half we conceded a goal. A goal very similar to the last one against Everton. Today, I think, we were able to react better. We were lucky for timing. We were lucky for the first goal. But, at the end, I think we deserved to win."

There was much criticism over the starting 11 with the likes of Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante left on the bench.

Sarri said of his team selection: "I cannot think that Kante, Hazard can play 70 matches in a season. Kante, at the moment, has played 50 or 51 matches. Hazard 48 with today. In the last period, they played two matches with the national team, 185 minutes for Hazard, 175 for Kante. Probably, in every season, there is a moment in which you have to rest.

"So, at the end, we were lucky because we gained three points and Hazard played only 35 minutes and Kante zero. It's very important for us to have them in a very good physical condition for the last seven matches of the Premier League. I know very well that Kante is a very important player for us, Hazard is a very important player for us. But I know very well that they cannot play 75 matches in a season. So sometimes you have to decide. It's not easy, because you have to choose the right moment and you don't know if it's the right moment or not. You have to decide."

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