Sir Geoff Hurst – England’s 1966 World Cup hat-trick hero and Grosvenorsport.com ambassador – shares his thoughts on Maurizio Sarri and Chelsea after last night’s FA Cup 5th round defeat to Manchester United.
Make no mistake, Chelsea’s 6-0 loss to Manchester City was embarrassing. A club of Chelsea’s size shouldn’t be going there and losing like that.
Maurizio Sarri made a relatively good start to the season, but results recently have been nowhere near good enough.
It now looks like his job is under serious threat because of these results. Even though the Europa League match in midweek saw them get back to winning ways, their FA Cup hopes were dashed after last night’s home defeat to Manchester United.
We know Chelsea’s owner doesn’t hesitate to sack managers, and after the losses against City, Arsenal, Bournemouth and now Man Utd, you’d say Abramovich would be within his rights to let Sarri go.
Last night’s match was a huge game, but in the context of Chelsea’s season then a bad result would mean that Sarri can start packing his bags as he could be out the door at Stamford Bridge.
You don’t get much time at big clubs like Chelsea, and after those losses he’ll get even less time to show he can turn things around. He’ll need some terrific results in the next few games to rescue his position, and it’s a tough ask.
Sarri-ball hasn’t worked
I’ve heard the term Sarri-ball being used in reference to the football Chelsea play this season. Call the style whatever you want, but it hasn’t been good enough.
I wouldn’t pick out individuals as being the problem for Chelsea, but the team haven’t been good collectively, and you might say that the team hasn’t bought in to Sarri’s style of football.
It doesn’t look good for Chelsea if this continues. Results aside, there’s been rumours Eden Hazard could move on and if that’s the case then they will have big problems trying to replace him next season.
I wouldn’t blame Hazard for leaving either. It looks like Chelsea have gone backwards and can’t challenge for the Premier League and the Champions League, which is huge for a player like him Eden Hazard.
I thought it was a slightly strange move to go for Gonzalo Higuain, as good a player as he is, or was. He’s now 31 and I think he’s lost his edge a little bit. It happened to me too at that age, so I know more than anyone!
Even if he was coming to the Premier League at a younger age, he would find it difficult. Now at his age, it’s a huge challenge to score goals and perform week in week out in the world’s most competitive league.
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