Chelsea’s priority is still a top-four finish, insists Rafael Benítez
Rafael Benítez insists Chelsea's priority for the season is still to finish in the top four after their FA Cup win over Manchester United
Rafael Benítez insists Chelsea’s priority for the season is still to finish in the top four after the Blues reached the FA Cup semi-finals at Manchester United’s expense.
Demba Ba struck the eventual winner in the 49th minute at Stamford Bridge as the west Londoners set up a clash with Manchester City at Wembley later this month.
Saturday’s defeat by Southampton dented Chelsea’s hopes of securing Champions League qualification for next season as fifth-placed Arsenal closed the gap on their London rivals to just two points.
But Benítez is still confident that the fourth-placed Blues will qualify for Europe’s elite club competition.
“The priority is the top four but we have to approach every competition trying to win,” said Benítez.
“We had two games in less than 48 hours so had to manage the squad. We don’t have too many players in some positions and we have to manage. I think we did it really well.
“The race for the top four will be until the end of the season. We’re in the top four with a game in hand, we’re in a very good position, the semi-finals of the FA Cup and the quarter-finals of the Europa League.
“I think it’s a great season at the moment.”