What is going on at Stamford Bridge?

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Chelsea’s latest loss has placed Maurizio Sarri’s position as head coach under scrutiny.

Chelsea were thrashed 6-0 by Manchester City on Sunday to leave question marks over the future of Maurizio Sarri as head coach.

Here, Press Association Sport assesses the state of play at Stamford Bridge.

History repeating

Roman Abramovich
Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has regularly axed bosses (Jed Leicester/PA)

Obvious flaws from the start

Chelsea lost Sarri’s first game in charge, August’s Community Shield with Manchester City, before embarking on an 18-match unbeaten run. While some waxed lyrical about Chelsea’s performances, the results papered over obvious flaws. Tottenham inflicted Chelsea’s first loss on November 24 and defeats to Wolves and Leicester followed before the turn of the year. A defeat of City on December 8 showed potential, but City did not take their chances that day. Chelsea have lost their last three away games in the Premier League – to Arsenal, Bournemouth and Manchester City – by an aggregate score of 12-0.

Maurizio’s motivational malaise


Sarri has repeatedly spoken of his frustration at inspiring his players. “This group of players are extremely difficult to motivate,” the 60-year-old said after the loss to Arsenal. He appears unaware of the impact of his public criticisms. Eden Hazard has almost single-handedly carried Chelsea at times this season, but has also been singled out by his boss. There was a long dressing-room inquest following the 4-0 loss at Bournemouth, but the response in a 5-0 win over Huddersfield was more about the standard of opposition than the improvement of Chelsea, as the subsequent loss at City showed.

Inflexible tactics

N'Golo Kante
N’Golo Kante has been played out of position by Maurizio Sarri at Chelsea (Adam Davy/PA)

Reasons to be optimistic?

Chelsea players
Chelsea beat Tottenham on penalties to reach the Carabao Cup final, against Manchester City on February 24 (John Walton/PA)

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