Friday, June 22, 2018

Benitez frustrated by dropped points

SoccerNews in English Premier League 9 May 2013


Rafael Benitez has lamented Chelsea’s inability to convert their chances after they were held to a 2-2 draw by Tottenham on Wednesday night.

Cheslea could have gone a long way toward sealing an automatic UEFA Champions League spot with a win at Stamford Bridge, but they twice threw away the lead.

Oscar gave Chelsea the lead in the 11th minute, only for Emmanuel Adebayor to level, and although Ramires restored hosts’ advantage, Gylfi Sigurdsson made sure of a point for the visitors with 10 minutes remaining, much to the annoyance of Benitez.

“I think that we had the chances on the counter attack to score the third goal and finish the game,” the Chelsea manager said.

“I think when we scored the first one we gave them the opportunity to play on the counter attack when we were controlling the game, we scored the second goal and after three or four good chances to kill the game we failed to do it and they began to push.

“Their second goal was offside but still we have to defend a little bit better. It was an open game, good for the fans, good for you but not so good for us because we were in control and we didn’t win.”

Chelsea are third, two points ahead of fourth-placed Arsenal and three ahead of Spurs, with league fixtures against Aston Villa and Everton sandwiched between the UEFA Europa League final against Benfica.

Benitez said managing his squad will be crucial in the final fortnight.

“For us it has to be the same, we have to think how we can win the next game and be ready for the (Europa League) final so again I will say we have to manage the players and manage the squad and see if we can find the balance,” he said.

Spurs managert Andre Villas-Boas was disappointed not to take all three points, but felt the quality of football on display had been outstanding.

“It’s not for me to judge but I think it lived up to one of the games of the season,” Villas-Boas said.

“There was great attacking football from both sides.

“We had a very difficult task at half-time because we had to go on and try to get back into the game whilst holding up Chelsea’s counter-attacks, which could have proven deadly in the second half.”

Villas-Boas is still hopeful Spurs or Arsenal falter over their final two matches to give his side the chance of Champions League qualification.

“We don’t depend on ourselves anymore, our situation changes a little bit,” he said.

“The destiny is not in our hands anymore. What we have to do is exactly what we had to do before, which is try to win the next fixtures.

“Hopefully somebody can slip up and change our position.”


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