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Ancelotti: Meeting turned season around
Published : 13 Apr 2010 07:39:00
Chelsea coach Carlo Ancelotti has conceded that a "clear-the-air" meeting with the players was an important moment in their season. Chelsea's season looked over during a week when they were dumped out of the Champions League by Inter Milan and then drew 1-1 with Blackburn in the Premier League last month. The draw at Ewood Park left them four points behind Manchester United and two behind Arsenal with a game in hand. However, Chelsea rallied following an "open and honest" team meeting with management after the draw with Rovers and the Blues have been unbeaten ever since. The meeting sparked a fabulous turnaround in their fortunes and has left them on course to become only the seventh team to win the League and FA Cup double. "After that meeting we spoke together and tried to clear the air after the defeats to Inter and Manchester City," said Ancelotti. "After that, the players were more focused on our aims. We were able to change our aims from the Champions League to the Premier League and the FA Cup. "It was necessary to speak with the players. We are involved in the same aim, to put Chelsea in first position. "It was a very important moment. When you have a difficulty, you have to move on quickly. "The right way is to involve the players to give a responsibility on me, but also on the players. "They have to take a responsibility when the moment is not so good. After that, the players worked with more concentration and with more determination, and together." Since the meeting, Chelsea have put five past Portsmouth, scored seven against Aston Villa, beat United at Old Trafford and secured their third FA Cup final appearance in four years with a 3-0 victory over Villa at Wembley. They are now one point ahead of Manchester United at the top of the Premier League and face Bolton tonight when victory will put them four points clear of the Red Devils.