James Tompkinson writes for the University of York’s The Yorker on the tactics of Roberto Di Matteo post Chelsea’s Barcelona triumph:
Stepping off the plane back from Barcelona, Roberto Di Matteo had every reason to be extremely happy with himself. To mastermind a win over Barcelona once could be coincidence. To do it twice could be chance. But to do it twice in the space of a week with a red carded captain, a defensive injury crisis and a striker whose recent form has left some questioning whether he could hit the side of the Empire State Building? That has to be genius.
When Di Matteo was given the Chelsea interim manager position after the departure of Andre Villas-Boas, he was admittedly taking on something of a poisoned chalice. Many highly rated managers have walked through the doors at Stamford Bridge and been spat out a shadowed version of their former selves.
Yet for Di Matteo the role was relatively risk free, and he is now proving that the never say die attitude that he has instilled in his players is paying dividends both at home and in Europe.
Full article here.