Tags Posts tagged with "Europa League"

Europa League

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Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri celebrates with the trophy after the UEFA Europa League final at The Olympic Stadium, Baku, Azerbaijan. (Photo by Adam Davy/PA Images via Getty Images)

Chelsea assistant coach Gianfranco Zola believes “all the players believed in what we were doing” despite Maurizio Sarri had some issues during his first season abroad as manager.

Zola told journalists after the victory of Europa League trophy: ‘It’s football, no? During a season you can have good moments or bad moments,

What is important is always believing in your work and always giving your best. That’s what we did”.

He added: “Fortunately the players believed in what we were doing, they helped us a lot, and we went through all the problems and difficulties that we had. We are all here celebrating and I think we deserved something”.

 

 

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With a superb second-half Chelsea defeat Arsenal in Baku and win the Europa League.

After a goalless first-half, an Olivier Giroud‘s header broke the lock in the first minutes of the second-half.

Pedro and a penalty by Eden Hazard put the Blues 3 up, before Iwobi scored for Arsenal. In the end, Hazard scored the second goal of the night with Chelsea winning the match 4-1.

The Blues so win their second Europa League after the 2013’s one after the final vs Benfica.

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Chelsea will try to finish their season winning a trophy in tonight’s Europa League final vs Arsenal in Baku.

Here are the confirmed lineups:

Chelsea: Kepa; Azpilicueta (c), Christensen, David Luiz, Emerson; Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic; Pedro, Giroud, Hazard.

Subs: Caballero, Cumming, Zappacosta, Cahill, Alonso, Ampadu, Barkley, McEachran, Gallagher, Willian, Higuain.

Arsenal: Cech; Koscielny, Papastathopoulos, Monreal; Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Torreira, Kolasinac; Ozil; Aubameyang, Lacazette.

Subs: Leno, Lichtsteiner, Mustafi, Jenkinson, Elneny, Guendouzi, Willock, Saka, Amaechi, Iwobi, Nketiah, Welbeck

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According to the latest reports N’Golo Kante has not recovered from his injury and he won’t be included in Chelsea‘s starting XI.

For Arsenal, former Blues goalkeeper Petr Cech seems favourite over Bernd Leno.

Here are the predicted lineups:

Chelsea: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Christensen, David Luiz, Emerson, Jorginho, Kovacic, Barkley, Pedro, Hazard, Giroud.

Arsenal: Cech, Monreal, Koscielny, Sokratis, Kolasinac, Xhaka, Torreira, Maitland-Niles, Ozil, Aubameyang, Lacazette.

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During his pre-game press conference in Baku, ahead of tonight’s Europa League final vs ArsenalChelsea‘s manager Maurizio Sarri spoke about his first season at Stamford Bridge: “For me at the beginning it was difficult to understand my players and the mentality, but after a very difficult January, February they started to change I think. Probably I changed, I don’t know. In this moment I love them. I have 22 wonderful men and players. I am really very happy. I have to consider it for the future. I have to consider that I love English football and the Premier League”. Sarri underlined. “We did a wonderful season. We are in the Champions League, we weren’t last year. We played a final in a competition where we played Liverpool and Tottenham, then lost the final on penalties to Manchester City. Then tomorrow the final of the Europa League”.

Nonetheless, it seems after Europa League’s final, Sarri could leave Chelsea to join Juventus. The Italian, however, doesn’t want to speak about this topic: “You know very well my opinion. It is the same of the last press conference. Today I need to speak only about the final. My players need me only to speak to the final”. Sarri told the media. “I want to think only to the final. I have a contract then for two years. Now is not the moment. Our feeling is that we want to win”.

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Chelsea’s manager Maurizio Sarri is ready for tonight’s Europa League final vs Arsenal at Baku.

The Italian coach, during his pre-game press conference gave an update on the injuries’ situation for the Blues: “We are in trouble with the midfielders. We have only three midfielders for three positions. We are in trouble. N’Golo is very important. He is the only defensive midfielder that we have. We will try to recover him. N’Golo for us, it is a problem”. Sarri explained. “He had a little problem in his knee on Saturday. We are trying. It is not serious but it is the problem of three or four days. We will try, but right now we don’t know. 50/50, yesterday 60/40 for no, but now 50/50. He was a little better this morning”.

Today Sarri can win the first trophy in professional football, but he still doesn’t consider this the most important night in his career: “I don’t know. Because the feeling between coach and media is different. For media this is the most important of my life, for me maybe not”. the Italian claimed. “Maybe for me more important was a match in Serie B in Italy. I don’t know. Tomorrow I might be able to tell you my feelings. Not at the moment.”

Finally, Sarri gave also a message to all Chelsea fans especially those who couldn’t travel to Baku: “I don’t know what to say about the problems. You have to ask UEFA and the clubs. I am very disappointed. We do this job for this kind of match. We want our fans here. We will try to win for us and also for them”.

 

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Chelsea are training for the Europa League final vs Arsenal as they hope to finish their season winning a trophy.

It hasn’t been an easy season for the Blues and, according to Marcos Alonso part of the reason is manager Maurizio Sarri never playing professional football:  “It’s never easy to come to a new country and new league, new football, new culture. The gaffer is still learning.” Marcos Alonso said. “He was not a football player either, so he is learning a lot this year. Taking orders from someone like that can be different, but at the end of the day we have to be professional and take on whatever he asks us for. He is different”.

So not only Chelsea’s season, but also Marcos Alonso’s one has been full of ups and downs: “I started the season very, and the team also started very well,” the defender added. “Then the manager asked me for something different. I tried to do what he was asking me to do and when the team started winning games again I had a small injury in my back. I had to stop for a couple of games but after that I was back playing good and getting back in the team when they needed me. Now there is a big opportunity to end the season well and go on holiday. It’s not easy of course to adapt. We are eleven players, all have to try to go in the same direction. Managers are different, they have different aspects of tactics. He wanted to change the team not just me. He wanted to change the way we start playing.”

 

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Chelsea were forced into extra-time after producing another 1-1 at Stamford Bridge, which meant 2-2 on aggregate in the Europa League’s semi-final.

The Blues opened the scoring thanks to Ruben Loftus-Cheek, whose goal was equalized through Luka Jovic (10 goals in the competition) a few minutes before the beginning of second half.

Eintracht Frankfurt went close to scoring the second even in the extra-time, but David Luiz and Davide Zappacosta were both crucial to deny with goal-line clearances.

A missed penalty from Azpilicueta was canceled out after both Hinteregger and Paciencia’s shots were denied by Kepa. Eden Hazard kept his cool from the spot to send Chelsea to Europa League final.

Maurizio Sarri’s men will face Arsenal in Baku on May 27th.

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Chelsea face Eintracht Frankfurt tonight at Stamford Bridge as the Blues try to reach the Europa League‘s final.

Here are the confirmed lineups.

Chelsea: Arrizabalaga, Christensen, Azpilicueta, Luiz, Emerson, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek, Kovacic, Hazard, Giroud, Willian

Subs: Caballero, Alonso, Zappacosta, Cahill, Barkley, Higuain, Pedro

Eintracht Frankfurt: 

Trapp, Falette, Hinteregger, Abraham, Kostic, Rode, Hasebe, Da Costa, Rebic, Jovic, Gacinovic

Subs: Ronnow, Ndicka, Chandler, Fernandes, De Guzman, Haller, Paciencia

Ruben Loftus-Cheek is expected to be starting in Chelsea‘s XI which will take on Eintracht Frankfurt at Stamford Bridge tonight.

The England international midfielder could replace N’Golo Kante after the Frenchman picked up an injury against Watford last time out.

The Blues have a chance to book a place into the Europa League‘s final after getting a vital away draw in Germany earlier on Thursday.

Loftus-Cheek, speaking ahead of the clash, told journalists: “As Chelsea, we want to win trophies so this is a massive opportunity for us. We won’t relax,” 

“It will feel different for me to win a trophy this season because I have helped the team so much in the Europa League campaign.

“This is the best spell of my Chelsea career in terms of games and goals.”

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