English Premiership

Sarri praise for match-winner Morata

Alvaro Morata (AP)
Alvaro Morata (AP)

Cape Town - Maurizio Sarri was delighted for Alvaro Morata as the striker ended a goal-scoring drought to net the winner for Chelsea in the Europa League on Thursday night.

The Spanish forward broke the deadlock on 70 minutes against Hungarian side Vidi at Stamford Bridge to settle a tight contest.

The result put the Blues on top of Group L with maximum points from two games.

After scoring just his second goal of the season, Sarri praised Morata, saying: "I’m really very happy for him.

"It’s very important for him to score, but I think it’s very important for him to play a good match. It’s very important for him to play for the team like he did this evening.

"Alvaro can restart from this performance. He played very well, better than the last period. He has to take confidence from his performance. Sometimes you can score, sometimes not, but the performance is important."

Sarri added that Chelsea faced a difficult opponent in the Vidi, although they did create a number of chances.

"It was very hard. In the first half we had opportunities for scoring. We didn’t do it, and so the second half was very hard.

"We created a lot of goal-scoring opportunities, but we conceded two or three opportunities to the opponents, and we have to do better in the defensive phase, in the positions under the line of the ball to avoid counter-attacks.

"They are very organised in their defensive phase. They defended very low but well. I was surprised because they were dangerous in the counter-attacks."

Up next for the Blues is a trip to Southampton in the Premier League on Sunday. Before taking on BATE in their next European tie, Chelsea will face Manchester United at Stamford Bridge.