Roberto Di Matteo talks of pride after Chelsea appointment is confirmed
Thursday 14 June 2012
Roberto Di Matteo admitted his pride at being appointed Chelsea boss on a full-time boss yesterday.
The 42-year-old, a fan favourite during his playing days at Stamford Bridge, was confirmed as the latest manager to take the helm at Stamford Bridge, on a two-year deal, yesterday evening.
The announcement came just three weeks after Di Matteo, as interim boss, guided the club to arguably their greatest triumph in the Champions League final in Munich.
In beating Bayern Munich on penalties, and claiming the one trophy owner Roman Abramovich sought most, Di Matteo completed a remarkable rejuvenation that saw him also claim the FA Cup after just 11 weeks after he took over from sacked boss Andre Villas-Boas.
Those successes left Blues fans calling for his permanent appointment and Abramovich to seemingly shelve plans to woo Pep Guardiola out of his year-long sabbatical after leaving Barcelona.
While Di Matteo, who becomes the eighth permanent boss of Abramovich's ownership, said he would have accepted the club's decision should they have opted to look elsewhere, he admitted his joy at being able to continue his "legacy" after Chelsea's stunning end to last season.
"I respect any decision the club was going to make but I'm proud my legacy with this club continues," he told Chelsea TV.
"I'm enjoying the break now and planning for next season - and looking at the squad.
"We've signed a couple of players. There will be a little bit of a change but not a complete overhaul of the squad.
"We want to do better in the Premier League - last season was difficult for us in the league - and to continue our success in cup competitions."
Di Matteo will look to improve on a sixth-placed finish in the Barclays Premier League last term but the club have already made moves in the transfer market to improve their fortunes.
Eden Hazard's arrival from Lille has been the most eye-catching with Germany midfielder Marko Marin also set to arrive. Porto striker Hulk is also reportedly close to a deal.
Today's statement from Chelsea indicated Di Matteo had played a role in the recruitment of those players, with chief executive Ron Gourlay also labelling him "the right man to lead Chelsea onto further success".
"We will be working closely with Roberto in the weeks ahead, some exciting signings have already been made and Roberto has had input into those," Gourlay said.
"Although he has set the bar very high in the short time he has been in charge, we know Roberto is the right man to lead Chelsea on to further success.
"We all believed he was a young coach with much to offer when we first asked him to take charge of team affairs in March and the manner in which he worked with us, the players and all the staff, and the success that followed, made him the clear choice when it came to selecting the person to take us forward in the seasons to come."
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