In our look at the latest Chelsea-related news stories from the media, Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer speaks about the importance of Chelsea’s visit to Old Trafford this weekend, Everton are reported to be interested in striker Tammy Abraham and Wigan manager Paul Cook talks about the career potential of on-loan full-back Reece James.
These stories are samples pulled from external media sources. They do not represent the views or position of Chelsea Football Club.
Solskjaer highlights importance of Chelsea showdown
After watching his side slump to a 2-0 loss in the Manchester derby on Wednesday, Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is keenly aware of the importance of Chelsea’s visit to Old Trafford this weekend as the Red Devils try to keep alive their hopes of Champions League qualification.
United’s 2-0 loss to City was their fourth defeat in six games and left them in sixth place, three points behind the fourth-placed Blues with three games to play.
However, Solskjaer is determined to see his team playing in the Champions League instead of the Europa League next season, and attempted to rally his players after the sobering derby defeat.
‘Of course, we want to get into the top four. I haven’t been planning on playing on Thursday nights yet. We just have to make sure we give ourselves a chance on Sunday,’ said the Norwegian, as reported by the club’s official website.
‘We're three games away from the end of the season, we’re three points behind the top four and no-one would have given us a chance a few months ago.
‘It’s maybe taken its toll on the players. It’s my job now to see who wants to sacrifice enough to be here.’
Added the United boss: ‘Sunday is a massive one. Sunday is something we have got to get ready for. The crowd has got to get ready for it, the players have got to get ready for it.
‘Of course. we have analysed them. Let's just make sure we turn up on Sunday with the same attitude and a little bit more quality in front of goal hopefully.’
Abraham on Everton radar
Having expressed interest in signing Kurt Zouma on a permanent basis, Everton are now being linked with another Chelsea loanee after the Liverpool Echo revealed that the Goodison Park club are also keeping tabs on strikerTammy Abraham.
Citing a report on transfer gossip website Football Insider, the local daily indicated that the England Under-21 international is on Everton’s list of centre-forward targets as they ‘look to recruit young, hungry players with the potential to make a big impact in England’s top tier’.
Abraham has had a solid season on loan at Aston Villa, scoring 25 goals and earning a place in the PFA’s Championship Team of the Season.
But while the 21-year-old’s prolific form may have piqued the interest of the Toffees, the Echo has cast doubts about the prospects of a permanent move as Abraham still has three years left on his Chelsea contract which runs to 2022.
Wigan boss sees big future for James
Wigan manager Paul Cook is in no doubt about the quality of Reece James and believes that there is much more to come from the 19-year-old Chelsea full-back.
James has been a big success in his first full season as a professional, helping the Latics to maintain their place in England’s second tier and earning a spot in the Championship Team of the Year
While he is unlikely to extend his loan stay at the DW Stadium to a second season, Cook told TalkSport that he was pleased to have played a part in the development of the England Under-21 international.
‘He is so self-confident, and that is backed up by his ability and work ethic,’ said Cook.
‘All season he has been showing people that he has a very strong career ahead of him, and we are delighted to be playing a small part in his progression.
‘He’s player of the month every month, and he’s man of the match almost every week. And he’s as good a lad as he is a player. There’s nothing else I can say about him.’