Jorginho was booed by Chelsea fans as he replaced Ross Barkley (Picture: Getty)Maurizio Sarri has defended Jorginho after the midfielder was booed by Chelsea supporters during the side’s 3-0 victory over Malmo.
Second-half goals from Olivier Giroud, Ross Barkley and Callum Hudson-Odoi in Thursday night’s second leg at Stamford Bridge sealed a comfortable 5-1 aggregate win to book Chelsea’s place in the Europa League last 16.
The result provided some respite for an under-pressure Sarri following a miserable run of results, but reports suggest the Italian could still lose his job if Manchester City beat the Blues in the Carabao Cup final this weekend.
Sarri’s marquee summer signing, Jorginho, has also struggled to adapt to English football and fans booed the Italy international as he made his way onto the field in the 76th minute.
Jorginho, who was the embodiment of ‘Sarri-ball’ at Napoli, has upset many supporters by inadvertently forcing N’Golo Kante out of position in Chelsea’s midfield.
Asked about the boos Jorginho received as he replaced Ross Barkley, Sarri replied: ‘I think that in the first 30 minutes, we understood why Jorginho is very important for our play.
‘We were in trouble to exit our half from pressing.
‘With Jorginho it is easier, I think. I hope our fans understand Jorginho is an important player.’
Sarri slammed Chelseas first-half display (Picture: Getty)Sarri believes Chelsea will be punished if they produce a similar first-half performance against City at Wembley.
‘It will be a disaster,’ he said.
‘I am worried about the first 30 minutes, only for the offensive phase.
‘We cannot play our football without confidence but the level of application and adaptation was good in the first 30.’
Hudson-Odoi scored Chelsea’s third and final goal versus Malmo (Picture: Getty)Hudson-Odoi was one of Chelsea’s standout performers against Malmo but Sarri played down the youngster’s chances of starting against City.
‘You must understand in the same position we have Pedro, Willian, Hazard, it’s not easy for a young player to play with consistency with these team mates,’ Sarri said.
‘I want to remember you that Callum played 14 matches, there isn’t in England another player with 14 matches in the first team. I think we are using him in the right way.
‘The 20 matches in this season will become 30 in the next, then 40 in two years.
‘I think also that the club must decide because if I am the club and want Callum on the pitch with consistency, I must sell another winger or the manager is in trouble.’
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