Di Matteo: I will be judged on results
Chelsea manager Roberto di Matteo accepts results will determine his long-term future in charge at Stamford Bridge - and will not let anything deflect his focus from delivering success next season.
The popular Italian, 42, was confirmed as the Blues permanent boss last month, having guided them to both FA Cup and then European glory. Di Matteo, however, knows that despite all of his good work last season, that will all count for nothing should things not go to plan again on the pitch.
"I have been in football all my life. I clearly know that managers are judged by results as simple as that. It's no different for me than anybody else," Di Matteo said.
"The end of the season was remarkable and the team was outstanding in achieving those targets, but that is the past - now we look to the future and we have to start again.
"We have to try and get running from the start and be competitive in all the competitions we are involved in. We have the quality and the players to compete. With Chelsea you are always looking to compete and be in the frame to win something at the end of the season, that will be the key."
Di Matteo becomes the eighth permanent boss of Roman Abramovich's ownership.
However, the Italian is not about to concern himself with suggestions he is only keeping the dugout warm for Pep Guardiola, who is on a self-imposed year-long sabbatical after leaving Barcelona.
"Speculation is out there every day. I have lived with it pretty well and I will continue to do so," said Di Matteo.
"I don't feel any shadow above or behind me. I focus on my job and try to do the best I can. Everyone else can say what they want."
Chelsea are set for a pre-season tour of the United States before returning to build towards the FA Community Shield against champions Manchester City at Villa Park on August 12.