Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has told Ruben Loftus-Cheek that he must get used to the pressure of playing for a club like Chelsea if he is to ever make a consistent impact on the first team.
Loftus-Cheek is widely regarded as one of England’s finest young players, yet he has struggled for game time since Sarri arrived at the club. He has just two substitute appearances to his name this season, and looks to be behind the likes of Ross Barkley and Mateo Kovacic in the pecking order at Stamford Bridge.
Ahead of Chelsea‘s Europa League clash with FC Vidi on Thurday, Sarri was asked whetherthe 22-year-old will be given a chance to impress. The Italian is quoted by Sky Sports as saying: “The pressure is normal for a player of high level so he has to get used to the pressure.
“It’s normal for a high-level player to have pressure from the club, the newspapers, TV, the manager.”
Sarri said that he is keen for each of his players to have featured in at least one match ahead of the upcoming international break, adding: “Maybe tomorrow it is time to see Loftus I think.
“He was unlucky in the last three weeks after the match with the national team, he had a problem but in the last five, six days he’s been better so I think he’s able to play tomorrow.”
He is set to make “six, seven or eight” changes to the side that drew 1-1 with Liverpool, but Sarri insisted that he is looking to win the Europa League, even though the side’s long-term ambitions lie in the Champions League.
He said: “I am here to win, I want to win something. I hope to be able to do it.”
Sarri is yet to win a major trophy during his managerial career, and will view Europa League glory as a reasonable target. After winning their opening game against PAOK, Sarri will be keen to see Chelsea continue their impressive form and earn another three points against FC Vidi.