Alexa

Chelsea boss blasts media over reports criticizing him

Chelsea boss blasts media over reports criticizing him

The mounting pressure on Avram Grant was reflected in an uncharacteristically emotional outburst on Friday with the Chelsea boss hitting back furiously over the criticism he has faced in the wake of the club's League Cup final defeat to Tottenham.
Although Chelsea remain in the hunt for the Champions League, Premier League and FA Cup trophies, Grant has had to contend with his leadership qualities being widely questioned, reports of splits within the Chelsea squad and claims that Barcelona boss Frank Rijkaard is being lined up to replace him at the end of the season.
It has all been a bit too much for Jose Mourinho's 52-year-old successor and, at the end of a long week, he let fly at his critics in scathing terms.
"Just because we lost one game... now, this is wrong, that is wrong," he fumed.
"I don't want to defend myself about this. The spirit is very good in the team, the situation is very good with the team. We're sorry about what happened against Tottenham. I'm sorry, but we did a good job in the previous five months."
Grant's assistant Henk ten Cate confirmed this week that he had been involved in a training ground row with captain John Terry on the eve of the League Cup final.
But the manager angrily insisted that the incident had been blown out of all proportion.
"No team in the world is without fighting. Sometimes it happens. Everything was okay a minute later. They shook hands, hugged."
Treated unfairly
Grant went on to suggest that he had been treated unfairly by the English media, sections of which have questioned his credentials to succeed Mourinho.
"I respect the media in England - even though you gave me no credit at the beginning, but since then I've heard a lot of lies," he said.
"Roman Abramovich has never told me one player that he needs to play, never told me to pick the team this way or that. I'm in charge. Please, you need to respect my professionalism.
"You're (the media) trying to hurt the team, hurt the club because we lost one game."
Grant went on to reject suggestions that some players had been critical of his team selection after the game and blamed agents for leaking harmful rumors to the media.
"I agree with Sir Alex Ferguson. Agents came to football to make things easier for the players. But sometimes they link things to the papers they don't need to and sometimes it hurts the team."