Maurizio Sarri has said that things aren't as bad as they seem at Chelsea despite their dip in domestic form, making comparisons between himself and Arsenal manager Unai Emery to defend his record in charge.
Sarri has taken significant flak recently after resounding league defeats to Bournemouth and Manchester City preceded an FA Cup exit to Manchester United, and comfortable wins over Huddersfield and Malmo in the same time have done little to quell speculation surrounding his potential sacking.
BREAKING: Senior figures at @ChelseaFC have held discussions over Maurizio Sarri's future as head coach amid concern over recent performances and results, @SkySportsNews understands. #SSN pic.twitter.com/ilrx954jlb— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) February 19, 2019
In his defence, however, Sarri pointed out that no-one is calling for the head of his London contemporary Emery, who was also appointed in the summer, and has a comparable record at the helm.
"I have to think of my work as a big picture issue, otherwise I’d do my work badly. So I continue along my path and nothing has changed, as far as I am concerned," Sarri told Sky Italia, via Metro.
"I keep hearing people praise Arsenal’s season, but they are not in the EFL Cup final, they have fewer points than us in the Premier League and reached the last 16 of the Europa League just like us.
"I don’t understand why people act as if our season is so negative and Arsenal’s is impressive.
"It’s true there have been many peaks and troughs, including some very deep troughs, but considering it’s my first season in a new league and environment, I think that’s acceptable."
For balance, it should be pointed out that Sarri did inherit a Chelsea side with title-winning experience, having lifted the Premier League trophy as recently as 2017, while Emery at Arsenal had more of a rebuilding job on his hands as he succeeded the legacy of Arsene Wenger.
28- Maurizio Sarri has won 28 of his first 43 games in charge of Chelsea in all competitions (D6 L9), one more than Pep Guardiola managed in his first 43 with Manchester City (W27 D9 L7). Impressive. pic.twitter.com/bkvg1cKQvA— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) February 21, 2019
That being the case, however, an unlikely win in the League Cup final over Manchester City this weekend would certainly go a long way to shifting the perception.
Source : 90min