Self-belief at Stamford Bridge that side can complete double, says Schurrle
Chelsea trail league leaders Liverpool by two points going into closing games of season
Andre Schurrle: “I’ve learned so much from Mourinho.” Photograph: Christopher Lee/Getty Images
Chelsea are two points behind league leaders Liverpool after Sunday’s 2-0 win at Anfield and take a goalless draw into the Champions League semi-final second leg against Atletico Madrid at Stamford Bridge. Mourinho, true to form, rubbished Chelsea’s Premier League title prospects in the aftermath of their Liverpool victory but Schurrle suggested an opposing view is held inside the club.
Preparation for Atletico
The Germany international also believes the confidence gained from Anfield will serve as ideal preparation for tomorrow’s contest against the Spanish league leaders.
“Everybody thinks we can win the league and the Champions League,” said Schurrle, “We know it will be tough but we have to believe and . . . hope Liverpool and Manchester City both give us something. But we’re still in it.”
Despite Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers’s criticism of Chelsea’s defensive performance and time-wasting tactics Schurrle insisted success takes priority over style in football and believes the condemnation that followed Chelsea out of Anfield was fuelled by envy.
“Winning is what matters. It’s the most important thing,” said the 23-year-old.
“I’ve learned so much from Mourinho. He said we needed to be perfect defensively and . . . If that means we have to be willing to do something that takes a yellow card, then we have to be ready to do that.
Offensive display required
“We showed against Arsenal that, when we need to, we can score goals. We know we can do that and we hope to give Atletico those sort of problems on Wednesday if they come and just try to defend.”
Atletico were unable to find a way through Chelsea at Vicente Calderon last week. But Schurrle admits a more offensive display may be required from Chelsea to secure a second Champions League final appearance in three years.
“We need to have a balance in our play, especially because we are at home . . . That means having the right balance, compact defensively but very good when we get the ball.
“Against Liverpool it was brilliant, a perfect game. We did exactly what we needed to do and what we were told to do.”
Mourinho appeal: Fine for ‘amazing’ remark
Jose Mourinho is to contest a misconduct charge stemming from his comments following Chelsea’s home defeat by Sunderland this month, with the manager having requested a non-personal hearing.
Mourinho, who is in the process of appealing against an €10,000 fine after being sent to the stands for re-entering the playing area at Aston Villa, had complained last week at the lack of humour in the FA’s response: “I told the referee he was amazing and I repeat, he was amazing.”
Assistant first-team coach Rui Faria has admitted two misconduct breaches after his livid reaction to Mike Dean’s award of Sunderland’s penalty eight minutes from time. That punishment could range from a touchline ban to a match-day suspension from the stadium.