EUROPA LEAGUE, 8PM, BT SPORT 2
Chelsea v PAOK
MAURIZIO SARRI held showdown talks with his Chelsea players after Saturday’s 3-1 defeat to Tottenham and wants to see some evidence they were listening when they take on PAOK in the Europa League tonight.
The Blues are already through to the last 32 and need a point to win Group L with one match to go.
‘I have a meeting of five or ten minutes with the individuals, individual meetings with the players,’ Sarri explained. ‘The targets are very clear in my mind — in the short period, to win something, and in the long period, to become the best team in Europe.
‘I want to see a reaction but I want also to see a reaction in the next Premier League match (on Sunday against Fulham) as well. I want to see we learned our lessons.’
I want to see a reaction, but I also want to see we have learned our lessons
Eden Hazard is missing tonight with an ankle injury picked up against Spurs but should be fit to face Fulham.
Sarri said: ‘He will not be able to play but I think we’ll be able to recover him for the next Premier League match.
‘I am worried because 25 days ago he had a back injury. Now an ankle. He has lost a lot of training. It’s normal at the moment he isn’t at the top of his physical condition.’
Striker Olivier Giroud says the Blues are determined to show their strength against PAOK, who they beat 1-0 in Greece in September.
He added: ‘The manager was not happy at all with our performance. It’s our first defeat this season, it has been hard to accept it.
‘We want to bounce back in the Europa League and after in the game against Fulham. We just want to make it right in the next game.’