Chelsea break Cardiff hearts to save Maurizio Sarri’s blushes as Neil Warnock hits out at ‘worst officials’

Chelsea's Ruben Loftus-Cheek celebrates scoring their second goal against Cardiff City. (Action Images via Reuters)
Updated 31 March 2019

Chelsea break Cardiff hearts to save Maurizio Sarri’s blushes as Neil Warnock hits out at ‘worst officials’

LONDON: Chelsea left it late to beat a desperately unlucky Cardiff City in the Premier League on Sunday as Ruben Loftus-Cheek’s goal saw Maurizio Sarri’s side run out 2-1 winners.
Blues boss Sarri was on the brink of another defeat that would have piled on the pressure and pushed him closer to the Stamford Bridge exit after Victor Camarasa’s sweeping effort put relegation-battling Cardiff ahead early in the second half.
And Chelsea’s traveling support did not hide their displeasure, chanting “We want Sarri out” throughout the second half.
Sarri’s response was to send on Eden Hazard, and the Belgian was straight into the action as Chelsea looked for their talisman to turn things around.
The London club had to ride their luck before Cesar Azpilicueta headed in Chelsea’s equalizer, even though he was clearly offside, with just six minutes left.
And Loftus-Cheek’s goal in the 91st minute completed the turnaround.
Chelsea’s fightback was further boosted when it looked likely Antonio Rudiger would receive a red card for bringing down Kenneth Zohore but the referee refrained from sending the German off.
The pressure on Sarri will reduce somewhat with this victory, which keeps the Blues in sixth place in the Premier League table and in the hunt for Champions League football, but the performance was unconvincing.
And Sarri will be fearing another tight affair against another relegation-threatened team in Brighton on Wednesday.
“We did not play very well in the first half. In the second half (we got better) as usual. We conceded a stupid goal but today we reacted better.
“We were lucky for timing but in the end I think we deserved to win.
“I don’t know if the (equalizing) goal was offside, I have to see the situation. Sometimes we can be lucky,” the Italian said.
Meanwhile, Cardiff remain third bottom and boss Neil Warnock was visibly furious at the decisions that pushed his team closer to relegation.
“It hurts. The referee had a decent game but we didn’t get the major decisions. The linesman, though, it is so disappointing.
“Chelsea know they have got away with murder today,” Warnock said.
“It is difficult, because I am feeling a bit flat now, but I am so proud of my players because we wanted to give it a go.
“To get let down by the officials (again), roll on VAR. I might be too old by the time we get VAR, but that’s why we need it,” he said.
“The biggest and best league in the world but probably the worst officials at the minute.
“It doesn’t matter who you play at the minute, it is who has a flag in his hand and who has a whistle.
“The offside (for Azpilicueta’s goal) is not even close. We’ve worked three weeks for this, and we get let down by decisions.
“We felt that (Sean) Morrison could’ve easily had a penalty in the first half and the second half,” he added.
“It has been one kick in the teeth after another this season, but we have always bounced back, and we have got some great games left to play.
“I will probably play the U-23s on Wednesday against Manchester City and try to keep it down to 10 or 11,” Warnock joked.


Maradona's doctor investigated for involuntary manslaughter

Updated 57 sec ago

Maradona's doctor investigated for involuntary manslaughter

  • Police raided Leopoldo Luque's surgery and home in search of possible evidence pointing to negligence
  • The probe was triggered by concerns raised by three of Maradona's daughters over the treatment he received

BUENOS AIRES: Diego Maradona's personal doctor was on Sunday being investigated for involuntary manslaughter four days after the Argentina legend suffered a fatal heart attack, prosecutors in San Isidro near Buenos Aires reported.
Police raided Leopoldo Luque's surgery and home in search of possible evidence pointing to negligence, according to television images.
The probe was triggered by concerns raised by three of Maradona's daughters Dalma, Giannina and Jana over the treatment he received for his heart condition at his home in Tigre, north of Buenos Aires, judicial sources said.
"Our investigations are ongoing, we are talking to witnesses including members of the family" of Maradona, a source close to the San Isidro inquiry said.
Luque, who declined to comment when contacted by AFP, had posted a photograph of himself with Maradona on the day the 60-year-old left hospital on November 12, eight days after surgery to remove a blood clot on his brain.
Maradona returned home to Tigre where he received round the clock medical care. He died of a heart attack on Wednesday, and was buried on Thursday at the Jardin de Paz cemetery on the outskirts of the Argentine capital.