Sarri on Chelsea midfield: Kovacic not ready; Cesc out

Date published: Friday 17th August 2018 1:23

Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri claims that loan signing Mateo Kovacic is not yet ready to start against Arsenal.

The Croatian Real Madrid midfielder will not replace Ross Barkley, as we speculated in our tactical preview of the weekend’s big game.

Barkley is now likely to retain his place alongside Jorginho and N’Golo Kante after they helped beat Huddersfield Town last week – and are favourites with the this Australian bookmakerker for another victory.

“Mateo will be very useful for us,” said Sarri on Friday. “He is a very technical player. In this moment he has to work, I think he is not ready now for 90 minutes, but maybe tomorrow for the last 30 minutes he could be used. I expect a lot from him. He is a great player.”

Asked about his best position, Sarri said:  “I think he can play on the centre right or left, it is the same for him. He is an offensive player who improved in the defensive phase in Madrid.”

Sarri also revealed that Cesc Fabregas will miss the Arsenal game with a knee injury.

He expects Chelsea to improve over the next two months, saying:  “It has been very difficult, but in this season it has been for every club especially the most important clubs with the World Cup, with friendly matches in Oz, Dublin and France.

“We started to work together ten days ago. In my opinion I think in two months we can be a very good team.”


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