Ashley Cole has backed Maurizio Sarri to be a success at Chelsea and says the Italian will bring exciting and successful football to Stamford Bridge.
Former Napoli boss Sarri joined the Blues in the summer after Roman Abramovich decided to sack Antonio Conte. Chelsea made an impressive start to the season under Sarri but the team have struggled with consistency in recent weeks.
Sarri has blasted his players on more than one occasion, leading to speculation over the Italian’s long-term future in west London.
But three-time Premier League winner Cole says ‘great manager’ Sarri needs more time and will bring success to Chelsea.
Asked whether Sarri is under severe pressure at Stamford Bridge, Cole told Sky Sports: ‘I don’t think so… Not just yet. ‘He’s come in, tried to put his philosophy into it and it’s down to the players as well. He’s a great manager.
‘If they win a few games, everything will be rosy again. He needs more time. He can bring that exciting, Italian football to England at Chelsea.’
Jamie Carragher, meanwhile, believes new signing Gonzalo Higuain could help save Sarri’s job at Chelsea. Higuain joined Chelsea on loan from Juventus during the January transfer window and opened his account for the Blues in Saturday’s thrashing over Huddersfield Town.
‘Over his whole career, I’ve always felt he [Higuain] was just below elite, world-class level. But he has shown world-class form under this manager,’ Carragher said.
‘There’s a lot of talk over Sarri. He needs Higuain to hit the ground running. ‘If he doesn’t get top-four or just scrapes it, you wouldn’t be surprised if he left in the summer.’