Former Chelsea assistant manager Gianfranco Zola acknowledges stars like Eden Hazard and Willian were ‘bored’ by Maurizio Sarri’s training drills.
Although he steered them to Champions League qualification and won the Europa League with a 4-1 victory over Arsenal, Sarri is not well remembered by many of the Stamford Bridge players.
“There were talented players, like Hazard and Willian, players who know how to win games on their own, but they were suffering from the type of exercises and type of training we were doing – but it was necessary for the others,” Zola told beIN Sports.
“I’ll be honest, they were brilliant because they got bored, but they kept doing it throughout and that was the reason why when everyone was dropping, we were going up towards the end.”
Sarri’s methods are based on repeated movements, quickly passing the ball into space for the teammate to run into, so that requires the patterns to be drilled into their memories.
“At the beginning, the players were very much behind everything that we were saying, they were brilliant,” continued Zola.
“They were following everything, but then as the weeks passed due to repetition and the amount of games they were playing, the players got tired and they also got bored in a way.
“But boring is part of our job. Sometimes you need to get bored but when you get bored you persist in what you’re doing and you get better.”
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