Gary Neville: How Maurizio Sarri needs to handle Chelsea FC squad

The Man United legend accuses the Chelsea FC squad of turning it "on and off like a tap"

Gary Neville
Manchester United legend Gary Neville (Photo: Sky Sports)

Gary Neville believes Maurizio Sarri needs to capitalise on what little control he has over Chelsea FC’s inconsistent squad, accusing the Blues players of turning it “on and off like a tap”.

The Blues made the short trip to Arsenal in the Premier League on Saturday evening knowing that a loss would open the door for both the Gunners and Manchester United in the top-four race.

Chelsea FC produced an inept first-half performance as Alexandre Lacazette and Laurent Koscielny both got on the score sheet to net decisive goals before half-time.

The Blues were unable to put Arsenal under any real pressure in the second half as Sarri’s side lacked invention at the Emirates Stadium.

The Italian head coach made an impressive start to his spell in charge after Chelsea FC remained unbeaten in the Premier League until a 3-1 loss at Spurs at the end of November.

Chelsea FC have collected 16 points from their last 11 games in the Premier League and Sarri is facing criticism of his signings and tactics following their difficult run.

Former Manchester United defender Neville was quick to point the finger at the Chelsea FC squad in light of their hapless performance in a 2-0 loss at Arsenal at the weekend.

“Sarri knows he’s going to get sacked at some point in the next 18 months or two years, that’s inevitable at Chelsea,” Neville told Sky Sports.

“He may as well call it how he sees it in the first six months when he’s got a little bit of control.

“It’s just a dressing room which can turn it on and off like a tap, it’s been able to do that for years. Sarri has probably thought he’s an experienced guy, he’s been around the block, and thinks he doesn’t need to take it.

“I have to say normally I would always say it’s not right to call out your players. But we’re going to see more of it, there’s no doubt in the next five or 10 years. I think it’ll become the norm, because it’s us or them.

“When managers have an aspect of control in the early parts of their jobs, they’ll have to seize it and basically will realise they are a difficult bunch at Chelsea. In the last 10-15 years, they’ve had the power to remove managers.”

Chelsea FC will take on Bournemouth in their next Premier League game on Wednesday 30 January.

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