Belfast Telegraph

Friday 18 April 2014

Business as usual for Di Matteo

Roberto Di Matteo has admitted Chelsea were below-par in the 2-2 draw with Juventus

Roberto Di Matteo has shrugged off the implications of Roman Abramovich's latest visit to Chelsea's training ground, insisting he was more than happy to see the Russian there.

Blues boss Di Matteo confirmed Abramovich was at the club's Cobham headquarters on Friday amid reports he had questioned players and coaching staff following Wednesday night's 2-2 Champions League draw with Juventus.

Di Matteo admitted "It wasn't a particularly happy camp yesterday here" after what was the European champions' third successive game without a win and third this season in which their deficiencies have been ruthlessly exposed by big-name opponents.

Visits from an unhappy Abramovich have proven a bad omen for Chelsea managers since the Russian bought the club and Di Matteo could be forgiven for being alarmed at receiving one just seven matches into his reign as full-time manager.

But he insisted his only concern was Saturday's Barclays Premier League game at Stoke and that dealing with Abramovich was par for the course.

"He actually comes quite often, to be honest," Di Matteo said. "He likes to be involved and he comes down whenever he can. He's the owner and he likes to know what's going on and he likes to speak to people - and he does that all the time.

"Obviously, we weren't happy about the result we got on Wednesday night, for sure, so it wasn't a particularly happy camp yesterday here.

"But we'll have try to pick ourselves up and go again and try to win points in the Premier League now.

"I have to focus on my job and try to prepare the players and the team to the best for tomorrow's game."

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