Former Chelsea favourite Tommy Langley insists the Blues need Maurizio Sarri to issue a rallying call while also stressing the importance of having leaders in the squad.
The west London club suffered their second leg defeat of the season after an insipid performance against Wolves at the Molineux on Wednesday. The 2-1 setback means the Blues have now lost two of their last three Premier League games, with last weekend’s win over Fulham preceded by a rather comprehensive defeat at the hands of Tottenham Hotspur last November.
Sarri’s charges have experienced a dip in league form recently after going on a blistering start in the new campaign. The Italian schemer set a Premier League record for the best start ever for a new manager by going into his first 12 matches undefeated but while the Blues won their first five games, they drew four of the next seven games with a lack of cutting edge in the final third emerging as a key concern.
It was last month’s defeat against Spurs, a top-four rival, that emphatically showed Chelsea’s deficiencies and after another loss against Wolves at Molineux, the west London side faces a tough task to get back to winning ways when they host current champions and league leaders Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.
Despite the recent slump, ex-Chelsea forward Langley believes the Blues will be ready come the weekend, although he emphasised the need for Sarri to issue a rallying cry to the squad. The 60-year-old also stressed the importance of having leaders in the squad, citing stand-in captain Cesar Azpilicueta to step up while urging Antonio Rudiger to adopt a more hardline approach when defending against Pep Guardiola’s merry men.
“The boys will be up for the weekend, but Sarri’s got to rally the troops,” said the former Blues favourite.
“We need leaders. This is going to be a big test for us at the weekend and we need people to step up to the mark and lead from the front.
“If it’s [Cesar] Azpilicueta being captain, it’s got to happen.
“If it’s Rudiger, he’s got to start smashing a few people and getting tight to people.”