Kalidou Koulibaly has detailed how Chelsea are “going to prove” they are a good team, and they plan to give “everything to eliminate” Real Madrid in the Champions League.
It’s been a tough season for the Blues, who currently sit 11th in the Premier League. A lot of that can be attributed to the massive influx of players that have joined in the past two transfer windows.
Indeed, 16 players have joined since Todd Boehly bought the club from Roman Abramovich. While it might seem paradoxical to say signing lots of players is a bad thing, it can’t be easy for that many new stars to gel together.
Koulibaly, who joined last summer, feels it’ll take time, but the squad will come together well.
“Half the staff is new, the ownership is new, and it takes time to put all of this together and be productive. We know we have a good team and we are going to prove it,” he told ABC.
The Premier League season is essentially a lost cause at this point. The Blues have very little chance of finishing in a decent position with just eight games remaining, so their attention will mainly be on the Champions League.
Chelsea face holders Real Madrid in the quarter-finals. While facing last year’s winners is obviously a massive challenge, Koulibaly feels they have what it takes to beat them.
“Very complicated. We know it, but we have to be convinced that we are capable of competing against them, because if not, we are lost,” he said.
“If we think that we are not capable of competing against Real Madrid, it is better not to introduce ourselves.
“Real Madrid are in a great moment, they have a great team, they have just scored four against Barça and they are the current champions of the Champions League.
“They are the 100% favourite, I am not going to lie to you, but we will give everything to eliminate them.”
Not only is that a chance for the Blues’ squad to make a statement, but for caretaker manager Frank Lampard to do the same.
Going deep in the Champions League would show Chelsea, or another side, he is worthy of a job.
“I am very sorry for Tuchel and Potter, the two coaches who have been sacked, but now we have to focus on Lampard’s work,” Koulibaly said.
“He is a great legend of this club. He knows the house perfectly and that will make it easier to work. He has told us to our face the real situation we are in and now we have to follow his advice and believe in his work.
“His first message has been to let us see that he believes in us and that we will all be important. That’s a good sign.”