Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti wants his players to bounce back against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday.
He fears Tuesday’s disappointing defeat to Manchester United in their quarter-final clash in the Champions League may have repercussions.
With seven games left in the season, the Italian manager wants his side to finish as strongly as possible and the run-in starts at the Hawthorns.
“After the defeat it is not easy to move on. But it is a good opportunity for us to show our mentality, our strength and our character,” Ancelotti said.
“It will be important to move on quickly and tomorrow is a very important game against a team with a strong qualities and new management.”
Chelsea are third, 11 points behind leaders Manchester United and the 51-year-old realises retaining their Premier League trophy will be difficult.
“I have said before the title race is not in our hands. In this moment obviously we cannot think about winning the title,” Ancelotti said.
“There is a strong gap between us and Manchester United which will be difficult to close. We just have to stay focused on our games.”
Centre-back Alex and midfielder Ramires have been ruled out against West Brom with muscle injuries, but Ancelotti is confident that they will face Birmingham City next week.
Meanwhile, Chelsea’s big money signing Fernando Torres has not scored for the west London club since signing from Liverpool for 50 million pounds in January, however the Italian has full faith in the Spanish striker.
“Torres just needs one moment, maybe one goal and that will give him the chance to move forward,” Ancelotti said.
“We have to believe. Torres is a fantastic striker and he will move on to become a fantastic player for Chelsea.”
Since Roman Abramovich’s arrival at Stamford Bridge in 2003 Chelsea have had only two seasons without winning any silverware, resulting in the coach that year being axed – and the former AC Milan manager is aware that his future hangs in the balance.
“The club can judge my job, and if they decide that at the end of the season that my performance was not good enough they have to make a change,” he said.
“I always respect the decision of the club. People are saying a lot of things about my future, but we have to wait and see until the end of the season.”
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