2017 UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL HOTELS, CARDIFF June 3RD & KIEV 2018 - CLICK HERE to BOOK HOTELS PACKAGES Di Matteo: A Feisty Derby

Di Matteo: A Feisty Derby

Roberto Di Matteo spoke to the press ahead of today’s derby against QPR on a whole range of issues, including the fitness of his squad, the nature of the match & the decision to send Florent Malouda to train with the U-21s.

Squad news 

Barring Marko Marin, Di Matteo has a fully-fit squad for the match. Marin has returned to full fitness & featured for the Chelsea U-21s against Liverpool for 45 minutes. The German showed no signs of any problems, but will not be a part of the squad to face QPR. Lucas Piazon is expected to feature in his place as the young Brazilian didn’t feature in the U-21s squad yesterday.

Di Matteo spoke on Cech’s elbow situation, stating “It is very good that the Czech Federation has cooperated with us and our goalkeeper doesn’t need to play in the friendly games. We have been managing his elbow and it is not decided yet if he will need anything done to it.

He has been playing with it for some period now and it is not an issue at the moment. If he stays without any pain then it is possible he will play on with that. If not, our medical department with the player will make a decision.”

Playing QPR 

Di Matteo has expressed his hopes that the pre-match handshake will go off without any glitches. He said, “We are going to respect the protocol and set a positive standard for the millions of people that are going to watch us all over the world, and make people focus more on the football side than other issues.

The Premier League is being watched all over the world now and we have to set a good, positive standard for everybody that is watching us and the handshake is just a part of it. It is part of the respect campaign as well and hopefully the game will be played in good spirit.”

At the same time, Di Matteo is fully aware that the atmosphere will be a feisty one. “Every time we go to Loftus Road it is always a feisty derby for us. It is a small ground with very passionate supporters from both sides, and the rivalries are well known so it is going to be a heated atmosphere.

We had a bad start in our last game against Atletico Madrid and after that it was always an uphill struggle for us in that game. We know we need to start well against QPR to try to retain our positive start we have had this season.”

Other news 

Di Matteo was also quizzed on the decision to sell Raul Meireles to Fenerbahce. His response was, “There was a decision by the club and the player. The player has a new contract with a very good club and the offer the club received was very good, and we both decided it was the best way to go forward.”

When asked about why Florent Malouda was sent to train with the U-21s, he said, “We have taken a decision as a club to put Malouda with the Under 21s. In the past there has been some expression from the player as well to maybe part company and it hasn’t happened, so in the end we moved forward and we brought in some other players and those are the players we are going to work with this season. The other players have accepted the decision and they have to focus on what is there to achieve this season.”

360 View

The fact that Roberto Di Matteo has a strong squad to choose from is brilliant news, considering the fact that most players have returned from international duty. QPR won’t be easy to play at home, but a victory would see us retain the top spot in the Premier League while ensuring us a derby win & also managing to deflect attention from various off-field issues. It is still unclear as to whether Anton Ferdinand will shake John Terry’s & Ashley Cole’s hand,  but all supporters really want is a good game of football. I honestly couldn’t care less if Anton snubbed the whole Chelsea team. And while I am still baffled at the clubs willingness to sell Meireles & the fact that they sent Malouda to train with the U-21s, we must now move on & focus on winning matches. And what better way to start off than with a win against QPR?

Shayne Dias

Our support to our Legendary Captain JT & about how the world has misunderstood him!

 John Terry | We Stand By You | We love you JT, Our LEADER!

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