Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri believes football clubs are “not ready” to effectively harness the work of sports psychologists
Chelsea went down to a surprise 1-0 home defeat against Leicester City at the weekend, where their disjointed response to Jamie Vardy’s 55th-minute goal was at odds with an earlier control of the contest.
The Italian manager suggested his players’ mentality was the issue, rejecting suggestions that they are not physically prepared to implement his style of football. However, the 59-year-old Italian’s previous experiences mean he is not ready to call in a psychological specialist.
“No [we don’t have one]. Not at the moment, because it’s not easy,” he told reporters, with a Boxing Day trip to Watford next on the agenda for the Blues.
“I had a sports psychologist 15 years ago in Italy, it was really very difficult because the clubs were not ready in that moment, but I think that they are not ready also in this moment.
“The physical performance, I don’t know the numbers but in the match against Bournemouth [last week’s 1-0 EFL Cup quarter-final win], it was one of the best of the season, maybe the best in quality.
“I don’t think it’s possible for the physical conditioning to change in two minutes. [Against Leicester] we were very well for 55 minutes and two minutes after the goal we were in trouble, so I think there is another reason.
“We lost the match because the reaction after the goal was in the wrong direction, I think we had only to continue. We were in full control of the match. We were dangerous without conceding anything to the opponents so we had only to continue.”