Maurizio Sarri has expressed his satisfaction with the performance of his fledgling players in the 2-2 draw with VIDI in the Europa League on Thursday, most especially with Ethan Ampadu and Callum Hudson-Odoi.
Having already qualified for the knockout stages of the tournament prior to Thursday’s Group L match in Hungary meaning there was little incentive to go for the win, the Blues were far from their usually dominant performance yet Sarri was nevertheless satisfied with the result.
Sarri introduced 10 changes to the side that beat Manchester City last Saturday, including Ampadu in central defence and Callum Hudson-Odoi in the wide left position and the ex-Napoli coach hailed the display of the two highly-rated youngsters.
“We made a lot of mistakes from a tactical point of view, but I am very happy with the character, with our reaction to their second goal,” said the Chelsea head coach. “On the pitch there were a lot of young players so it wasn’t easy to react. We made mistakes: we lost a lot of balls, we could have used the ball better, but at the end I am satisfied with the performance, especially from the young players.”
“The goal was not the fault of Ampadu. We were zonal marking, and at no point did we touch the ball in advance of the first zone, which is really a very big problem, so it’s not the fault of Ampadu.
“Ampadu played a very good match, especially in a team like this. We need to consider that if Ampadu played in the usual team, it would be easier for him. Today we changed 10 players. It’s not easy for the young players to play in a new team like the one in this match.
“I am also very happy with Callum Hudson-Odoi. Of course they need to improve, but they are on the right path.”