Related

Article

Le Saux wants Chelsea to prioritise Europa League

20 April 2013 01:49

Former Chelsea defender Graeme Le Saux believes winning the UEFA Europa League is vital for Chelsea this season.

The west London club face a semi-final against Swiss club Basel, who eliminated Tottenham Hotspur in the quarter-finals, for a place in the tournament decider.

Fenerbahce take on Benfica in the other semi-final, and Le Saux feels Chelsea are obliged to add UEFA's second-tier competition to the trophy cabinet at Stamford Bridge.

"I think when you look at the teams left in the Europa League, Chelsea are the iconic team remaining in the competition," Le Saux said.

"But it is a tough competition just to get to this stage. Basel, who we (Chelsea) play in the semi-finals beat Tottenham over two legs so it will be a tough semi-final.

"Then we wait to see who wins the other semi and hopefully we will be there for the final in Amsterdam.

"Some people say it has been a disappointing season for Chelsea, especially getting knocked out the Champions League in the group stages, but if you look at how they got knocked out, by a fine margin, it was a shame.

"The opportunity to become the first club to hold both trophies in the same season would be an amazing achievement and to be one of only three other clubs to hold all four major trophies would be marvellous and should motivate the players.

"I don't think success should be seen on whether you qualify for the Champions League as opposed to winning a major European trophy."

Le Saux also gave his backing to the club's interim manager Rafael Benitez, and believes the Spaniard could still be appointed on a long-term basis.

"It is difficult when there is a position which is probably available at the end of the season," he said.

"We still don't know if Rafa Benitez wins the Europa League and qualifies for Europe next season, will the club keep him as manager going forward?

"There is a decision to be made by the board at Chelsea.

"Whilst there is a question mark about who will manage next season, there will be a lot of names linked.

"It is flattering for them and the club to have Jose Mourinho and Manuel Pellegrini associated with the club (which) shows the status they have and the quality which Chelsea are associated with in appointing managers," he said, referring to rumours linking Real Madrid coach Mourinho and his Malaga counterpart Pellegrini with the Stamford Bridge hot-seat.

Sponsored links

Info

2 - 2

Competition
Premier League
Date
21 April 2013
Game week
34
Kick-off
17:00
Half-time
0 - 1
Full-time
2 - 2
Venue
Anfield (Liverpool)
Attendance
45009

Goals

0 - 1
26' Oscar
 (assist by Mata)
D. Sturridge 52'
(assist by L. Suárez) 
1 - 1
1 - 2
57' E. Hazard (PG)
L. Suárez 90'+6
(assist by D. Sturridge) 
2 - 2

Lineups

# Player Bookings
1
2
4
28 53'
34
12
7
17 57'
11 26'
9 38'
10
Coach: Rafael Benítez

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
15 52'
33 82'
1
11
16
35
37
# Player Bookings
30
13
8
19
22
26
29

Friday 31 October

Thursday 30 October

22:44
22:34
19:59
19:31
19:20
19:07
18:50
18:31
18:28
18:11
18:10
18:07
18:05
17:33
17:18
17:12
17:02
17:00
16:19
16:02
16:02
15:45
15:30
15:12
13:53
13:30
13:01
12:44
12:40
12:37
12:23
12:16
12:09
12:08
12:00
11:54
11:48
11:45
11:39
11:33
11:30
11:17
11:00
10:04
09:58
09:47
09:39
06:03
05:44
04:52
04:45
04:37
03:57
03:34
02:53
02:51
02:03
01:43
00:35
00:18
00:17
00:09
00:04
00:00
00:00

Wednesday 29 October

23:52
23:31
23:00
22:59
22:54
22:49
22:47
22:39
22:25
21:51
20:50
20:32
20:27
19:29
19:14
18:18
17:58
17:49
17:40
17:23
16:46
16:30
15:25
14:50
14:15
14:04
13:20
13:04
12:36
12:22
11:08
11:05
10:39
10:35
09:31
06:45
05:05
03:04
01:31
01:31
00:09
00:03

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 9 +15 23
2 9 +15 19
3 9 +9 17
4 9 +5 16
5 9 +4 14

Facebook