Belfast Telegraph

Villas-Boas turns focus to Europe

Chelsea boss Andre Villas-Boas swiftly turned his attention to the Champions League after watching his team turn in their best performance of the season to date in a 2-1 win at Sunderland.

The Blues entertain German side Bayer Leverkusen at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday evening in their opening group stage game, and will head into it having enjoyed an unbeaten start to the new campaign.

Villas-Boas said: "I just have to focus on what the owner has told me. One of his obsessions is to play well, and that's what we try to do. Of course, we have to add the trophies to the playing well situation, and that's our main focus as a top team, there's nothing new in that."

He added: "If you take the European trophy, of course it is a dream to everybody, but it's the most difficult trophy to win when you see the level of the other European teams as they are and it's going to be a massive challenge again.

"We just have to go step by step on it. We have two days to rest only before the Leverkusen game with Bayer having one day extra to rest, and we have to focus on getting the first three points before going to Valencia.

"Today, it went very well for us in terms of what we want to achieve, not that we haven't tried to do it before, but it just didn't happen in the other three games.

"Fortunately, today we were able to play the passing game that relates more to how we train, and the team played very, very well. I am very happy with the display."

The defeat was Sunderland's eighth in nine home games and left manager Steve Bruce still looking for a first win of the campaign.

He said: "It was very difficult against a very good Chelsea team. They had terrific possession of the ball and we spent that much energy trying to get it back.

"That was the one thing that disappointed me - when we had it, we gave it away too cheaply and that made for a very difficult afternoon."

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