Tuesday, 11 December, 2018

Chelsea give Sarri flawless Premier League start at Huddersfield

Maurizio Sarri anticipates early season 'problems' before Chelsea reach full potential Maurizio Sarri needs 'a couple of months' to impose his style at Chelsea
Cassandra Castillo | 12 August, 2018, 12:26

But Chelsea again punctuated a strong spell for the hosts with a goal, Jorginho sitting debutant Ben Hamer down with a skip in his run-up for an incredibly cool spot-kick after Christopher Schindler caught Marcos Alonso at the end of a neat move from the Blues.

Huddersfield, too, can take heart from the performance, certainly in the first half.

"It depends on me and the players".

"I have to know the characteristics of the players because I think I don't want to do another Naples", he said.

"I want to do a good Chelsea".

Part of that was down to the quality of Huddersfield's press, a positive sign for David Wagner's side after the more passive approach of last season, but Sarri's side didn't take care of the ball as well as their manager would've liked.

Despite dominating possession, Sarri's side looked uneasy early on and managed only two shots in the whole of the first half.

The ex-banker is known for employing a rigid 4-3-3 system and has so far demonstrated his enthusiasm to bring that system to Stamford Bridge.

His header, which beat all of Chelsea's defenders and their new keeper, unfortunately deflected off of the post and back into play.

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"The game was more hard than the result".

'Fundamentally, the club was very open, we signed a great goalkeeper to replace another great one, ' he added.

"We are not a physical team so for 20 minutes we were in trouble but we did very well", Sarri said. "The best capacity was to suffer, but then I think the second half maybe they were exhausted".

Kante is already recognised as one of the better midfielders in Europe for his ability to appear in many places at one time defensively.

The thrilling football played by his Napoli team has raised hopes that Sarri alone can increase Chelsea's goal threat with stylistic changes, but he pointed out that his new players must adapt to making faster decisions on the pitch if that is to be the case.

And while Sarri's daring move paid off in the return of a goal apiece, his side also dominated the midfield easily.

Also, Jorginho only misplaced four of his 66 attempted passes, recording an accuracy of 93.9% - the best of any player to start the match. That is not a surprise, perhaps, but it doesn't bode well for his chances of much playing time with Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Cesc Fabregas and Mateo Kovacic to come in.

Chelsea will look to build on their winning start when they host Arsenal next Saturday (5:30pm KO).

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