Belfast Telegraph

Di Matteo modest over Chelsea turnaround

Roberto Di Matteo has claimed Chelsea have "not achieved anything" since he took charge and refused to take any credit for their remarkable turnaround.

Di Matteo has masterminded seven wins and a draw from his nine matches at the helm since taking over from Andre Villas-Boas but the Blues are underdogs to progress beyond the semi-finals of the Champions League or FA Cup or close the five-point gap on fourth place in the Premier League.

"We haven't achieved anything," Di Matteo said. "We are in a good moment but we haven't really achieved anything in that sense. We've got good results and this group has got together to find these good results. But we need more to be able to say we have actually achieved anything."

He added: "Finishing fourth and, on the way, if we can win a trophy, I think that'll be a successful season for us."

That would doubtless increase the clamour for Di Matteo to be appointed manager on a full-time basis.

But almost regardless of what happens between now and the end of the season, the Italian's CV looks a whole lot more impressive than it did after he was sacked by West Brom last year.

"I haven't proved anything in that sense," he said. "I think the credit goes to these players, the way they've reacted to a situation that has arrived here and they have been great in trying to rectify this."

Di Matteo continued to bat away any question that insinuated he might be responsible for Chelsea's revival, insisting it was all down to the same players who had performed so feebly under Villas-Boas.

The 41-year-old eventually prompted exasperated laugher with his response to the umpteenth suggestion he may have done a good job, saying: "I think the players have done extremely well - no, seriously!

"I don't know where you want to get but I think the players have done extremely well."


From Belfast Telegraph