Maurizio Sarri has finally be unveiled as the new Chelsea head coach as he spoke to the media for the first time following his appointment.
Sarri was confirmed as Antonio Conte’s replacement last week, signing a three-year deal at Stamford Bridge.
The Italian was showcased to the media before answering questions on everything from Eden Hazard, transfers and tactics.
Large sections of the press conference were spoken in Italian with Sarri keen to expand his English language before tackling them in complete English.
Here is everything you need to know from his first press conference as the new Chelsea head coach.
*quotes translated via a translator, as heard on ChelseaTV.
Sarri expressed his discontent towards the transfer market. The new Chelsea boss explained how he would rather focus on the players he has available to him.
We would always like to keep the strongest players, this is what any managers wants to do. But we will have to see how the transfer market goes. I feel much more a pitch manager, a field manager than a general manager. I think I’m one of the few managers who is bored by the transfer market. I’m not that interested in it. Our task as managers is growing the players we have.
In stark contrast to Conte’s first press conference, where the running theme was all about ‘work’, Sarri reaffirmed his ambition to have fun and to bring exciting football to Stamford Bridge.
I hope so. A lot depends on the players. My goal is to have fun as long as I’m here and remain competitive in all the competitions until the end.
There have been some concerns about how prepared the squad would be for the new season, Sarri said it is important that they begin to work on implementing his style of football.
Antonio reached incredible results here. He is an extraordinary manager. I play in a slightly different way so it will take some time for the squad. It will take some time to build a different way of playing. All good things Antonio Conte did should be left and not be changed. It is important to know how to impose one’s football philosophy in such a short time.
Despite not naming individuals when quizzed about potential transfer targets, Sarri hinted there was one area of the pitch that he told the club to improve. It has since been confirmed after the press conference that this was mistranslated and he was referring to central midfield positions.
A short amount of quality is lacking in our centre-halves.
Gary Cahill’s future has been thrown into doubt in recent days, Sarri hinted that there could be a role for him still.
With respect to Cahill, I think he can still give us a lot.
Sarri said he is looking forward to working with Hazard, despite his future at the club being up in the air.
Hazard is a very high-level player. I think he one of the top one or two European players. I hope that I will manage to improve him, this is difficult because he has reached a very high level.