Di Matteo asks for Chelsea unity

Chelsea boss Roberto di Matteo has called senior players at the club to work together and achieve Champions League football until the end of the season, The Daily Mail reports.

The Italian has been appointed interim manager at Stamford Bridge following Andre Villas-Boas’ dismissal after less than nine months in charge. Chelsea’s senior players were said to have a poor relationship with Villas-Boas, which ultimately cost him the job at Stamford Bridge. The club’s main targets are to win the FA Cup and qualify for the Champions League next season, which took a big step after a 1-0 win over Stoke City.

Di Matteo said: “It was just a matter of talking to the players individually and realising that we need to move forward, keep it simple and try to achieve our targets. I feel I have everybody onside. They all know what the task is for the next two months of the season.”

Chelsea captain John Terry has denied the claim that player power cost Villas-Boas his job in West London. The Blues skipper made his return from knee surgery against the Potters and believes the poor form and the negative results were the reason Villas-Boas left the club. Terry’s injury worries have coincided in a bad patch for Chelsea, but the captain’s return will galvanise the group under Di Matteo.

Terry said: “In all clubs, when players don’t play, there’s always misunderstandings and people upset about not being played. All the players care about Chelsea Football Club, the owner certainly does. Andre was very good – unfortunately, we didn’t get the results”.

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