Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo: Football is like an addiction for me

Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo says his "addiction" to football was what prompted him to move into management

roberto di matteo
Roberto Di Matteo's side currently top the Premier League table Photo: The Sport Review

roberto di matteo

Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo says his “addiction” to football prompted him to move into coaching after calling time on his playing career.

Di Matteo was forced into a premature retirement aged 31 after suffering a broken leg in 2000, but moved into management in the summer of 2008 when he took charge of MK Dons.

After a spell at the Stadium MK and West Bromwich Albion, the Italian was appointed assistant manager to Andre Villas-Boas last summer.

He took the Chelsea reins in March of this year following his the Portuguese’s dismissal and led the Blues to an historic Champions League and FA Cup double.

“When you’re a football man you are hooked, it’s like an addiction,” Di Matteo told Chelsea’s website.

“You can live without it for a little while but the addiction is always there, and I just felt at some point that I wanted to live those moments during the week where you are tense, you feel the adrenalin and the emotions that you don’t get in another job.

“I’ve had it all my life and I can live without it for a little while but it’s always there, I had the fire in my belly again and wanted to do something in football.

“I still had a great time doing other things. There is a time in life for everything, and it was the right time for me after my injury to finish that chapter in my life, get away from it and then begin a new one.

“I think it helped me, it gave me some balance, but I didn’t see coming back into football as unfinished business. I was very happy with my career.

“Some people finish their career with age, some others with injury and others with their own decision, everybody is different but I never felt like it was unfinished business.”

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