Chelsea can't blame Europa League fatigue for West Ham setback - Sarri

Ruben Ruiz
September 24, 2018

Chelsea head coach Maurizio Sarri said the Blues still have some way to go before they are on the same level as Liverpool.

The Blues had won every match of the season in all competitions ahead of their trip to London Stadium but were held to a goalless draw by an organised West Ham side on Sunday afternoon.

Sarri's side are still part of the leading pack in the table, but he believes that it will take as long as a year of playing together before his side can match Jurgen Klopp's.

"And we had three clear chances before they created one chance but you must score". We have started to work all together only about 40 days ago, less 10 for the global break, so for us it's a bit early.

"For us it is a bit early".

Asked in his post-match press conference whether beating Liverpool next weekend was a must if Chelsea are to maintain their momentum in the league, Sarri said: "No. We are improving in the defensive plays, in the last two or three matches we've done very well, but we have to improve in defensive plays especially in this kind of match".

Maurizio Sarri is expected to make a number of changes to his first team line up with both Zappacosta and Christensen heading back to the bench and David Luiz and Azpilicueta taking their place in defence.

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Life in the Europa League spells a harsh reality for Chelsea and Arsenal this season: Thursday night games followed by the quick turnaround to Premier League action on Sunday.

They may remain just outside the relegation zone, but the signs suggest that West Ham have definitely turned a corner, having collected all of their points in the last two games. Asked if his star player had done so against West Ham, the Italian said: "Not in the first half".

Pedro was Chelsea's only significant absentee, thanks to the shoulder injury he picked up in the final seconds of the midweek win over PAOK, but he was missed.

"Signing nine players and with a new manager it was always going to be hard", Antonio told Sky Sports.

"If you want to be competitive in Europe, I think this is right. Hazard did very well in the last 25 minutes, more on the right than the left, but it was really very hard today for the striker and the two wingers".

Before then the two sides will face off in the third round of the Carabao Cup at Anfield on Wednesday, and Sarri is not sure how much he will rotate his team.

Other reports by GizPress

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