Sarri insists he never lost Chelsea’s dressing room

Maurizio Sarri rejected the idea that Chelsea’s players have started showing him more respect, saying that their return to form is down to an improved mentality rather than a shift in his relationship with his squad.

Following a troubling sequence of four defeats in seven games across all competitions, Chelsea has shown signs that they are regaining confidence after back-to-back victories against Tottenham and Fulham in the Premier League.

Those wins have teed the Blues up for the visit of Dynamo Kyiv in the Europa League on Thursday and Sarri said he was happy with his side’s response since the chaos of goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga’s refusal to be substituted in the EFL Cup final loss to Manchester City.

When asked whether his squad is difficult to manage, Sarri told reporters: “In my opinion no. Of course the situation is not easy because we are Chelsea, we have to win something, but the players are not very difficult to manage.

“They respected me before. It wasn’t a problem for me, the dressing room. We have some problems with the mentality because we did very bad in two or three matches, not the dressing room.”

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