They have been magnificent and tonight was all about resilience
Burnley earned a point at Chelsea last night but home boss Maurizio Sarri failed to attend the press conference after the game, preferring to send his assistant Gianfranco Zola.
Zola explained: “Maurizio is very frustrated so would prefer not to come over here. He is frustrated about the game because he’s been sent off, I think he’s been offended as well and didn’t think it was the right thing to do. I think he’s been told something from their bench, don’t ask me exactly what, I don’t want to go down that line. We will see what we can do about it.
“We understand it’s a football game and you say words because of the adrenalin but he wasn’t particularly happy about it. Maurizio has been sent off while he was trying to help Kevin (referee Friend) to tell our players to get into position. Kevin misinterpreted that and sent him off so he is very unhappy about it.”
Onto the game, Zola said: “We still have gained a point on other teams and won’t give up until the end. We tried everything to win the game. We were frustrated in the second half but we didn’t play enough and they were wasting time too much. That’s what frustrated us. We tried everything we could and that’s the reason we’re very unhappy.
“We should have done more in their box, be more effective, more precise, but the desire to win was there until the end. Especially in the first half, there was a lot of quality. To break down a team like Burnley defending their last 20 metres is not easy.”
He said: “I am delighted with the performance tonight. They were excellent in the first 30 minutes of the game and we had to fight, work and do all the diligent stuff as a group and eventually, that got us a point.
“That’s 40 points now and that’s a strong marker. I like things to be factually done, but we are certainly in a very strong position, especially after having 12 points from 19 games at Christmas. It’s nice to be in this position now and the players have been tremendous. To come through that period as mentally strong as they have is a really tough thing to do.
“They have been magnificent and tonight was all about resilience. We’ve all seen the technical prowess teams like Chelsea have and we had to do all the basics well. There’s an honesty to how we work, but also that’s the record number of goals we’ve scored in the Premier League now.”
He continued: “There was a lot of noise about at the start of this season and some describe it as a bad season, but I think it’s been a fantastic season. To come through that beginning and where we are now, with all the challenges along the way, is a magnificent achievement. People will look at how we got the result tonight, but we have no choice. They might say you are not doing this or that, but equally we are not spending fortunes.
“We are trying to develop a side with one of the lowest wage bills in the Premier League. We have to find a way to win games and pick up points and sometimes we play really good football, as we did recently against Bournemouth and West Ham. Other times we have to dig in and do as we did tonight, and that is a magnificent point, make no mistake. When you are on 39 points and you go and get that next point at Chelsea, that is a magnificent achievement.”
Asked about the incident at the end of the game by the tunnel, he said: “I don’t know what happened at the end because I went over to applaud our fans and when I came back there was something going on. Call it handbags, man-bags, bum-bags; some kind of bags. I’ve been around the game to have seen a lot worse, but I was more bothered about clapping our fans because they have travelled a long way down here on a Bank Holiday and the lads have given them something to shout about.”Share this page :