Even as the season reaches its end, Maurizio Sarri’s headaches are never-ending.
Indeed, during the nail-biting finish to the UEFA Europa League semi-final victory over Eintracht Frankfurt, Andreas Christensen pulled up in extra-time. Obviously, the youngster had to be taken away, and the defensive crisis mounts on the Italian.
However, to everyone’s surprise, the centre-defender on the bench, club legend Gary Cahill, was never called even when a centre-back was missing. Instead, Sarri moved Cesar Azpilicueta to centre-back and brought on the frankly awful Davide Zappacosta instead.
The former Chelsea captain – who has won it all in West London – must have been absolutely bewildered, as did the fans groan at the complete disregard for the outgoing hero.
Just when things have started to improve at Chelsea, such egotistical decisions can ruin the foundations Sarri’s created. Cahill’s departure this season is inevitable, but at least he can get a final hurrah after so many years of service to the club. If neither Christensen or Antonio Rudiger make the UEFA Europa League final, the former Chelsea captain deserves a chance to shine in his final appearance for the club.
Take him out on a high and add another trophy to his impressive list of honours at the club and Sarri might actually start to get people on side.
Cahill’s himself revealed how he can’t respect Sarri’s for what he’s done to him. So, the Italian can make final amends by granting him a final shot at glory. Kepa was given a second chance for what he did, after all, and that was arguably so much worse.
Furthermore, the 33-year-old’s put in some strong performances against Arsenal in the past, knowing how to detain them with his clever defending.
In what’s set to be an exhilarating finale, Cahill’s experience can be vital. He can lead one final charge to guide Chelsea to another Europa League title, while Sarri can himself regain the supporters’ trust by giving the faithful defender a fitting farewell.
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