Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger has revealed the school-like nature Maurizio Sarri’s matchday training sessions.
Th defender’s comments come in the midst of a turbulent time for the Chelsea boss after notable defeats to Bournemouth, Manchester City and Manchester United in recent weeks.
The trouble with Sarriball: Five things to know….
- Things began well for Chelsea under Sarri as they went 18 games unbeaten in all competitions to start the season.
- Many saw Jorginho as the key to Chelsea’s early season form and so far this season he has completed more passes than any other Blues midfielder (2054).
- However, he has been marked out of the game on several occasions, giving Chelsea problems in midfield.
- Sarri’s strikers have also struggled with a reliance on top scorer Eden Hazard (18 goals) who has played centrally and out wide this season.
- Chelsea’s 6-0 defeat to Man City was their heaviest loss in 28 years.
Rudiger, who is in his second season at Chelsea, hasn’t been scared to voice his opinions on the team’s inconsistent performances.
He labelled Chelsea’s loss to Leicester in December “a disaster” and was seen reasoning with Chelsea’s fans after the recent 6-0 thrashing at City.
— Oliver Harbord (@ojharbord) February 10, 2019
Speaking to Sky Sports about Sarri’s matchday training methods, he said: “It’s not like we’re doing box-to-box runs. It’s not physical, it’s just the tactical things he likes to do.
“It’s the same if you sit in school the whole time listening to someone. At the end of the day, you have to do your job.”
Tonight, Chelsea welcome Malmo to Stamford Bridge for the second leg of their Europa League last-32 clash. Chelsea carry a 2-1 lead into tonight’s game, which Rudiger has said is his sole focus despite the Carabao Cup final looming large.
Subscribe to Squawka’s Youtube channel: sqwk.at/Squawka-Sub
“Let’s speak about Thursday because it’s important for us to stay in this competition and fight to win it,” the German international added.
“Then, on Sunday, we have a big game against City at Wembley. That will show the truth.
“The truth in terms of keeping up with opponents like City, Liverpool and Tottenham.”
With pressure building on Sarri, there have been murmurs that he may have lost the Chelsea dressing room, but Rudiger is adamant that isn’t the case.
He concluded: “You always play for your manager, but you want results. You want to win. No player on earth likes to have the kind of run we’ve had.”
Are Chelsea really in the middle of a crisis?
Chelsea’s recent form has led people to believe that Chelsea are in a crisis with the majority of blame being laid at Sarri’s door.
However, in the middle of a transition period, should this drastic inconsistency have been expected? Although Chelsea had just come off the back of Premier League and FA Cup winning seasons with Antonio Conte, it was always going to be difficult to follow that.
With Sarri set in his ways, it was always going to take time for his style to rub off on Chelsea’s players even though they did go on an outstanding run at the start of the season.
That run proves that Chelsea can be successful playing Sarriball and the knee-jerk reaction of replacing Sarri isn’t necessarily the correct option.