Analysis

Maurizio Sarri on FA Cup defeat and the ways we can improve

Maurizio Sarri believes his side need to be more aggressive at both ends of the pitch if we are to get back to winning matches on a consistent basis.

The Blues exited the FA Cup this evening, losing 2-0 to Manchester United at Stamford Bridge after Ander Herrera and Paul Pogba scored for the visitors in the first half.

Sarri provided his reaction to the night’s events.

‘I think with the result we were unlucky because in the first half we played better than the opponent and at the end of the first half it was 2-0,’ he said.

‘In the second half it was really very difficult to play. They are a very physical team and defended low and compact. We played confusing football in the second half but in the first half we played well.

‘We need to be more aggressive and determined with situations in our box and the opposition box because the difference was there. We played 78 balls in the opposing box and United played only 16 in ours, but the result was 2-0, so that was the difference.’

Sarri was asked if he felt his team completely understood the way he wants them to play

‘Not completely at the moment because, especially in a situation like the second half, we have to move the ball faster mentally and materially. We need more movements without the ball and less individual actions. When you have spaces of course you can have individual actions, but when the situation is like the second half we need to move the ball faster and we need more movement without the ball otherwise it’s impossible to score.’

The Italian believes he has the full support of his players

‘I think so. Of course I’m not sure, but I think so. I think the situation with the players is very good in terms of our relationship but that’s not so important. What’s important is to play and get good results but my relationship with the players at the moment is good.’

Sarri was asked for his thoughts on the reaction of the fans in the second half

‘I’m worried about the results, not the fans. Of course I can understand the situation and I can understand our fans because the result wasn’t good and we are out of the FA Cup, but I’m worried at the moment about our results.

‘It’s very easy (to create a more positive feeling). If we are able to win three or four matches in a row it will be very easy. It’s difficult to win five matches in a row.’

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