Friday May 31 2019
Pirlo: Blame Chelsea, not Sarri

Andrea Pirlo believes Maurizio Sarri is not to blame for the perceived lack of harmony at Chelsea. “Maybe it’s the club.”

Sarri led Chelsea to Europa League glory and a third-place finish in the Premier League, ensuring a return to the Champions League next season, but his future has been the constant subject of speculation.

“I’m studying to become a Coach,” Pirlo told the Daily Mail.

“I have to do the last licence in September and after that, maybe it will be good for me to become a Coach.

“It’s not easy for Sarri. He needs time to adapt the players to the new system. For me he is a very good Coach. The supporters have to stay very calm.

“For me, Conte was best manager I had in my career. At Chelsea he did good work - he won the Premier League and the FA Cup. Maybe he had a problem with the owner and now he’s free.

“If you see the history of the club over the last 10 years, they changed too many Coaches. The problem is not the Coach, maybe it’s the club.

The 40-year-old then revealed he turned down offers from the Blues and Manchester City, instead choosing to stay at Milan and then sign for Juventus.

“I had the chance to come [to the Premier League] with [Carlo] Ancelotti to Chelsea and with Manchester City when I went to Juventus,” he continued.

“Chelsea said that I was very old - 30 years old! And the other time I preferred to come to Juventus.

“For sure it would have been a fantastic experience but I’m happy that I decided to stay in Italy.”

The Italy icon retired from football in 2017, so does he miss playing?

“No, I’m good. When I decided to stop playing it was the perfect time. I was tired and I had pain, so it was the right time. In this moment I don’t miss the game. I’m good at home.

“Now I’m working on the TV [as a pundit], with Serie A and the Champions League. I don’t spend too much time on that. I like to stay with family, with friends.”

Finally, he was asked about Cristiano Ronaldo and whether he could also play in MLS.

“I was surprised because it’s very difficult to get Ronaldo to Juventus but it’s important for Serie A,” he concluded.

“He improves the League, he improves the other teams. It’s important for the country. We hope that Ronaldo is a trendsetter and more big names will follow him.

“I don’t know. He has two or three years on his contract with Juventus and after then it’s possible that he comes to the USA or to another country.

“I was very happy to play here. It was an important experience for me, for my family. I’ve been around the city many times, going to restaurants with friends.”