Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has hailed his side after seeing them grind out a 2:1 win at bogey ground St James’ Park and make it 3 wins from 3 games in the Premier League this season.
Chelsea found a way to break through and garner all 3 points on the day after an own goal from DeAndre Yedin restored their one-goal cushion in the dying minutes of the game.
Newcastle substitute Joselu had previously drawn the Magpies level after an Eden Hazard penalty
Chelsea lost 3 nil at St James’ Park in the Premier League under Conte last season and Sarri was thrilled with the persistence they put up in the game.
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When he was asked if his side had passed the test of character, he replied:
‘I think so. To win here is difficult for Chelsea — it’s difficult for every team here.
‘To be drawing five minutes from the end, for us it was more difficult. I think this team, from the character point of view, is a strong team.’
Chelsea maintained their perfect start under Sarri but the Italian is not getting carried away by seeing them joint top after three games. He said:
‘Nothing, I think, because the honour is after 38 matches, so after three… it’s important to start very well, as well as possible, but now the table is not important, I think.’
Meanwhile, Newcastle boss Benitez who was unhappy with the penalty decision and the free-kick which resulted in Chelsea’s winner defended his tactics in the game.
He said: ‘When I was at Liverpool, we beat Real Madrid 4-0 at home; we were very offensive. When I was at Napoli, we were attacking all the time; we were offensive.
‘When you are at Newcastle United, you have to manage because you are in the Premier League and you have what you have.’