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Di Matteo blames defence

Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo laid the blame for his side's 2-1 defeat at West Brom firmly at the door of his defenders after an unhappy return to The Hawthorns.

Last Updated: 18/11/12 at 08:22 Post Comment

Shane Long headed the home side into an early lead and although the European champions levelled through Eden Hazard they were undone by Peter Odemwingie's winner in the 50th minute.

And Di Matteo, who was at the helm of the Baggies from June 2009 until February 2011, admitted the Blues need to find a better balance between attacking intent and being sound at the back.

The Italian told Sky Sports: "Defensively we were not good enough to win the game after conceding two goals. Thinking that you need to score three to win the game is just mad.

"We know we can play a bit more defensively. We are trying to find the right balance where we can create chances and win games, but we have to start with being defensively more attentive."

The Chelsea boss, who left regular starters such as Oscar, Juan Mata, Ramires, Ashley Cole and Branislav Ivanovic on the bench, claimed the team selection was influenced by the demands of international football.

"It was forced on us with the international games in midweek," he said. "We had players coming back from long trips overseas with five or six hours of time difference.

"They were very fatigued and tired and were not in condition to start the game."

The Blues have taken just two points from their last four Premier League games to fall four points behind leaders Manchester City and face a crucial UEFA Champions League date with Juventus in Turin on Tuesday night.

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Readers' Comments

H

ow are people still backing Arsenal for the title? It's like you're predicting the tide not to come in; Arsenal will finish third or fourth and make the quarter final of the Champions League. It was ever thus.

thefuldutch
F365's Season Predictions

N

othing screams 'Panic!!' when your new manager brings Fellaini on as a sub for your star signing of the summer and within 5 minutes you concede the winner. I know it is only the first game in but I would seriously be sh1**ng myself I was a Man Utd supporter. This has the potential of being very nasty indeed.

stevemelbourne
Now Are You Nervous, Louis?

I

n the words of Pete Townsend, meet the new boss, the same as the old boss. Though I would comment that it's 3 more points than we picked up in the same fixture last year, so that's a 100% improvement.

uncle monty
No Sign That Liverpool Will Lessen Attacking Intent

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