Benitez says 'realistic' Abramovich wants results not 'Barcelona-style' football
Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez has said owner Roman Abramovich has asked him to deliver good results and is not expecting the Blues to play Barcelona-style football since he realizes the club doesn't have the players of that top pedigree.
Benitez, who dined with the Russian billionaire on Thursday and then accompanied him on Monday to the Blues' U21s win over their Fulham counterparts, bucked that trend.
"It's possible to play attacking football, like Barcelona, with these players. But I have spent some time with Roman, and we were not talking about the Barcelona style," the Daily Mirror quoted Benitez, as saying.
"He wants to see his team play well. We watched the Under-21s - me, him, Michael Emenalo and John Terry - and we were talking about the opposition players," he added.
"Roman says he wants to see the team playing well and winning, but not with the Barcelona style. He knows we don't have Messi, Xavi, Iniesta - players who have been working together for years," he said.
Benitez added: "Roman is realistic, I'm sure. He's been fine since we've been talking about it. He sees how we work and he knows it'll take some time to fix everything, but he knows we can do it."
"I think we can play attacking and defensive football together. We have to find the balance. We have players with talent in attack. We have to give the ball to them to create, that's our main issue: How do we link with them and give them the freedom to perform and do well? But they have to be organised as a team as well," he said.